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ASHVAKAN KAMBOJAS GAVE THEIR NAME TO AFGHANS/AFGHANISTAN


By TRUTHFUL. on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 10:05 am:

The foregoing two posts clearly attest the fact that besides horses, the ancient Kambojs also domesticated elephants, bullocks and cows etc.

And being a WARRIOR and AGRARIAN nation,[=VARTA-SHASTER-OPAJIVIS of Kautalya Arathashastra and Varahamihira's Brahtasamhita] the Kambojas made use of horses and elephants in the wars/battles with an enemy and of the bullocks/oxes and the cows for agriculture.

But the most noted product of Kambojs was their war horses.[Sanskrit ASHVA=HORSE]. And due to this fact, some of the Kamboja clans especially those residing in Swat/Kunar valleys were also popularly known as ASHVAKAS......ASSAKENOIS/ASPASIOS of Greeks; ASVAYANS and ASHVAKAYANS of Panini.[See Panini's Ashtadshyai IV-1, 99; IV-1,110]

And this very Sanskrit name 'ASHVAKAYAN/ASHVAKAN' of these warlike Kamboja clans, in later centuries, got transformed into ASHVAGAN, AVGAN, ABGAN, APOKIEN[Chinese], VOKAN, APKAN, APAGAN, AFGHAN etc etc.


By TRUTHFUL on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 4:55 am:

Besides HORSES, the ancient Kamboj was also famed for its ELEPHANTS.

ASPASIOS ASSAKANOIS [ASVAYANS ASHVAKAYANS OF PANINI]:

Read the following:
[1] "............................. the first lephants Alexander encountered were amongst the Assakenian Indians in mountainous north Pakistan. They were said (Arrian 4.25.5) to possess 30 beasts in their army that Alexander was "expressly anxious to find out about" (Arrian 4.30.6); so much so that of the Indians who were elephant hunters, "Alexander took pains to have them among his attendants" (4.30.8). Two of the elephants were lost during the subsequent expedition to snatch them from their grazing grounds, but the rest were successfully captured."

http://www.ne.jp/asahi/luke/ueda-sarson/Al-Ele.html

[2] Also, Chieftain Afrikes, the real brother of chieftain Assakenos [=Ashvaka Kamboja chief....see Political History of Ancient India, p 216-217, Dr Raychaudhury, Dr P. N. Banerjee] is said to have a a fleet of 15 elephants which he used against Alexandra. The name Afrikes obviously points towards Apryti (Afridis) [Ref: History of Panjab, Vol I, p 232, Dr L. M. Joshi, Dr Fauja Singh; Ancient Kamboja, People the Country, p 287; These Kamboj People, 1979, K. S. Dardi, p 128 ]

http://www.ne.jp/asahi/luke/ueda-sarson/Al-Ele.htmlbb

Besides 30,000 horses,the Ashvakas/Assakas had used 30 elephants against Alexander's army.

This shows that besides horses, the Kambojas also possessed elephants and used them in battles against Alexandra.

The Kambojas of Parapamisadea [Kabol/Kunar/Swat valleys] were noted for their fine breeds of oxes, horses and elephants. Alexandra had captured over 230,0000 of best variety of oxes, and had sent them to Macedonia.

cf "...It apears that the Asvayanas were good cattle breeders and agricuturists. This is clear from big number of the bullocks, 230,000 according to Arrian, of a size and shape superior to what the Macedonians had not known, which Alexander captured from them and decided to send them to Macedonia for agriculture" [History of Panjab, Vol I, p 226, Dr L. M. Joshi,
Dr Fauja Singh, op cit Dr Kamboj, p 247].

"...The Ashvaka Kambojas had fielded 30,000 cavalry, 30 elephants and 20,000 infantry against Alexandra..".[Ancient Kamboja, People the Country,
p 248, Dr Kamboj]

MAHABHARATA
cf "....Sudakshina, O king, who had many thousands of wonderful elephants, hath been slain in battle by Arjuna....".

http://www.sacred-texts. com/hin/m08/m08005.htm

MAHABHARATA
kadalI mR^igamokAni kR^iShNa shyAmAruNAni cha .
kAmbojaH prAhiNottasmai parArdhyAnapi kambalAn .. 19..\
gajayoShidgavAshvasya shatasho.atha sahasrashaH .
triMshata.n choShTra vAmInA.n shatAni vicharantyuta .. 20..\
pR^ithagvidhAni ratnAni pArthivAH pR^ithivIpate .
Aharankratumukhye.asminkuntIputrAya bhUrishaH .. 21..\

http://www.alkhemy. com/sanskrit/mirrors/mahabharata/txt/02.txt

TRANSLATION OF ABOVE:
"..The king of Kambhoja sent unto him (as tribute) innumerable skins, black, darkish, and red, of the deer Kadali, as also numberless blankets of excellent textures. And hundreds and thousands and thousands of she-elephants and thirty thousand she-camels wander within the palace, for the kings of the earth brought them all as tribute to the capital of the
Pandavas..".

http://www.sacred-texts. com/hin/m02/m02048.htm

MAHABHARATA:
"...The king of Kamboja gave innumerable skins of the best king, and blankets made of wool, of the soft fur of rodents and other burroughers, and of the hair of cats,--all inlaid with threads of gold. And he also gave three hundred horses of the Titteti and the Kalmasha species possessing noses like parrots. And he also gave three hundred camels and an equal number of she-•••••, all fattened with the olives and the Pilusha..."

http://www.sacred-texts. com/hin/m02/m02050.htm


By TRUTHFUL on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 5:05 am:

SOME MEANINGS OF CLANISH TERM KAMBOJ:

(1)The term horse and the Kamboj were so much interconnected interwoven together that a HORSE from the country of
KAMBOJ was also called Kamboj.

(2)The ancient lexicographers have rendered another meaning of Kamboj as an ELEPHANT

e.g.
Kambojo hastimede........[Ref: Nanamanjari 421; Ancient Kamboja, People the Country, p 247, Dr Kamboj]

(3)Yet Kambu/Kamboj also means SILVER. [Kautalyas's Arathshastra see below]

http://www.swaveda. com/Governance/Arthashastra/Book%202.htm

(4)Yet another meaning of Kamboj is GOLD

(5)....and yet another meaning of Kamboj is a Conch or Shell.

All these products were native to ancient Kambojas.

As is well known from ancient Sanskrit texts, in ancient times, a famed product from a certain country was also known by the name of that country. That a one meaning of Kamboja was a HORSE another was an ELEPHANT clearly attests that besides horses, elephants were also reared/found in plenty in ancient Kamboj country.


SEE MORE MEANINGS OF KAMBOJ BELOW:
[A] Kamboja

Kamboja as m. pl., N. of a people and its country

• m. the king of this people Pan. 4-1, 175

• a shell L

• a species of elephant L. (cf. kamboja.)

[B] Kamboja

kamboja mfn. (fr. kamboja g. sindhv-adi and kacchâdi), born in or coming from Kamboja (as horses) R. v, 12, 36 c

• m. a native of Kamboja (a race who, like the Yavanas, shaved the whole head

• originally a Kshatriya tribe, but degraded through its omission of the necessary rites W.

• a prince of the Kambojas MBh. i, 6995

• a horse of the Kamboja breed W

• (as), m. pl., N. of a people= Kamboja Mn. x, 44 MBh. R.: Ragh. BhP. Rajat

......................................................................................................................................
http://students.washington.edu/prem/mw/k.html


By TRUTHFUL on Saturday, August 28, 2004 - 8:36 am:

KAFIRS KAMBOJ...
Another connecting link.

"Physically, the Kafir do not seem to differ much from their neighbours; they speak a language classed by some as Dardic. It is in their religion that their ethnic individuality is most strikingly expressed. They practice a form of polytheism; worship consists mainly in the sacrifice of animals. Dancing is important, and shamans practice divination. PRIOR TO MODERN LEGAL PROHIBTION OF THE CUSTOM, THE DEAD WERE DISPOSED OF, UNBURRIED, IN HEAVY WOODEN COFFINS. LARGE WOODEN STATUES OF ANCESTORS, OFTEN ON HORSE BACK***, TRADITIONALLY STOOD NEAR GRAVEYARDS, many of these works now reside in museums. Housing in Chitral and Nurestan consists of strong rectangular wooden buildings. The economy is based on agriculture and the raising of goats and oxen".

http://www.ibcsk. com/nl/ency/eb.people.htm

***COMMENT: The HORSE here again powerfully links the Nuristanis to the ancient Kambojas. The ancient Kambojas were noted for their love for horses and were remarkable horsemen/cavalary-men. Some of the Kafirs have a tradition that they moved from plain valleys into the impenetrable mountanous regions of Hindukush in wake of medieval Mohamadan invasions. In the impenetratble mountanous regions of Hindukush, the horse could not be reared/utilised to a advantage. Hence, though the intruding Kafirs stopped the practice of horse-reering, but they started erecting effigies of their 'ancestors on horsees' to commemorate the love/fad of their ancestors for the horses.


By TRUTHFUL on Saturday, August 28, 2004 - 2:11 am:

KAM/KAMOZ KATIR/KAMTOZ
[FROM SIAPOSH KAMBOJ TRIBE]

[1]

"Gul Mohammad (Nuristani tribe, sub tribe of Kamozi* or Kam) is originally from Kamdesh. One of the biggest authorities in the District is Mullah Sadiq, who is the Head of Kamdesh shura. Also Mohammad Omar, who is one of the elders."

"Kamdesh district is located alongside the Kunar River in a very beautiful valley and it borders with Narai district of Kunar (South) and - Bargimatal district of Nuristan (North). To the East, Kamdesh borders with Chitral agency of NWFP of Pakistan and Central Nuristan - to the West. "

"Administration is located in the building (occupied school) on the main road, right at the bottom of the hill, on top of which Kamdesh village itself is situated. "

"The only reported conflict is between two sub-tribes of Nuristani tribe: Kamozi [=i.e Kamoz of Robertson, Caumoje of Elphinstone] and Kantozi (or Kate). Both live in Kamdesh district. Kantozi** tribe is the minority (residing in three villages: Kushtuz, Mandagal and Oja Rostom). "

"Around 600 families of Kantozi tribe were displaced from Kushtuz village after Kamdesh armed attack to the village in 1997. "

http://www.ecoi.net/pub/17354_D_Kamdesh.pdf

[2]

"The District is hosting around 150 IDP families from Kushtuz village (Kamdesh district)."

"These families were displaced from Kushtuz due to armed conflicts between Kamdesh (Kamozi* sub-tribe) and Kushtuz (Kantozi sub-tribe) tribes in Kamdesh district. Currently IDP families are temporarily settled with the host community (same tribe: Kantozi) in and around Nikmok village."

"Around 150 Kushtuz IDP families, who fled in 1997 from Kamdesh district (Kushtuz village) as the result of violent raid on their village by Kamdesh tribe. They are settled in the areas of Nikmok village. Reportedly IDP and local communities are having good relationships and no tensions have been reported. However, as mentioned by one of the Bargimatal shura members, a group of Kantozi** tribe living in Bargimatal supports Kushtuz in the conflict (this group reportedly has link and support from Mullah Afzal, the leader of Lashkari-Tayab in Pakistan, while another group is unhappy with other’s link with Mullah Afzal and tries to convince the other group to maintain neutrality in the conflict."

http://www.ecoi.net/pub/17355_D_Bargi_Matal.pdf

*NOTE Kamozi [=Kam or Kamoz of Robertson, Camoje Caumoje of Elphinstone]: The Kamoz clan is predominant in Bashgul valley/Kamdesh.

**NOTE: Kantozi [=Katir or Kamtoz of Robertson, Camtoz of Elphinstone]: Kamtoz or Katir clan is predominant in Karirgul valley.


[a]KOM/KAM or KAMOZ CLAN [Richard Strands]

Native Name: k'om.

Other Names: "Kam" (Robertson [1896]), kâmozi (Pashto name), "Bashgali" (from Khowar bašgal'i 'Nuristani; person from bašg'al [the lanDai sin Valley]').

Location: the lower LanDai Sin basin and an adjoining portion of the Kunar Valley. This land is traditionally called kâm'aston in ancient Kom songs.

http://users.sedona.net/~strand/Nuristani/Kamkata/Kom/kom.html

[b] KATIR/KAMTOZ [Richard Strands]

Native Name: kât'a. The population of the Râmg'al and kul'em Valleys in western Nuristân were sufficiently propagandized at the time of their conversion to Islâm to renounce their native name as synonymous with "infidel." They now prefer simply to be called "Nuristâni."

Other Names: kântozi (Pashto name), "Katir" (Robertson [1896]), "Bashgali" (from Khowar bašgali 'Nuristani; person from bašgal [the lanDai sin Valley]').

http://users.sedona.net/~strand/Nuristani/Kamkata/Kata/kata.html


By TRUTHFUL on Friday, August 27, 2004 - 8:49 am:

Even on Islamization in 1896, the Nuristani Society is still divided into

(1}LAND-OWNING-LIVESTOCK-HERDING ELITE,
(2}a class of SKILLED CRAFTSMEN/CLASS OF UNSKILLED
CRAFTSMEN [called Slaves...See The Kafirs of Hindukush by Scott Robertson].

The first class is the relic of the 'Ayyo'[=Arya] and the later the 'Daso' [=Dasa, Slaves] of the Buddhist Text, Majhima Nikaya [II.149] with reference the YAVANAS and the KAMBOJAS of CENTRAL ASIA in ancient times.

cf "In Yona and in Kamboja, and also in the neighbouring countries, there are only two classes of people, masters and slaves, and that a master could become a slave or vice versa".

Yona-Kamboj.esu….. dve’va vanna…..Ayyo ca va daso ca
ayyo hutva daso hoti, da so hutva ayyo hotiDasavya mucceya [see Majjhima Nikaya II/149]

Note that since the Nuristanis had remained almost unaffected to the outside cultural influences due to their isolation in the impassable defiles of Hindukush mountain ranges, hence these people have kept up mayny of their ancient social/cultural and religious customs still intact as we already observed.


MODERN NURISTANI SOCIETY, EVEN AFTER ISLAMIZATION IN 1896, STILL CARRIES THE RELICS OF THE ANCIENT SOCIAL CUSTOMS PREVALENT IN KAMBOJA/YAVANA LANDS...... SEE BELOW.

"Nuristani community is pretty much the same as other communities in the world. Memberships in Nuristani communities are based on different cultural factors. Different villages speak different languages. Within the same valley Nuristani people make distinction based on location as well as reputation.Nuristani society is based on groups. People see themselves as belonging to different classes, an individual is either a member, by birth of a free land-owing and livestock herding class or he is not. If not, he belongs to craftsman class which makes him automatically belong to low status in Nuristani community. Craftmans don't own livestocks but these are the people who are builders, carvers, weavers, potters,smiths, and tanners in Nuristan. Craftmans play very important role in the community but still are not valued for their services. "
.................................................................................................................................

"These different classes are not found in every village in Nuristan; in some villages there are no families of craftsman. In yet other villages there are three distinct classes: the land-owing livestock-herding elite, a class of skilled craftsmen, and a class of unskilled craftsmen. Traditionally there were two ways in which a member of elite would compete for higher status; by being a successful warrior and by being public feast. Success was measured by the number of enemies killed or number of people attending the feast. Feast system is still very popular in Nuristan. (Jones 1969) "

http://members.rogers. com/gsahot0552/website/main.html

This is because the Syaposh clans [the Kams (Kamoz), Katirs (Kamtoz) etc] the dominant clans of Nuristan are stated to have descended from ancient Kambojas.


By TRUTHFUL on Friday, August 27, 2004 - 9:19 am:

CLANS OF SIAPOSHE TRIBE:

FROM RICHARD STRANDS' WEBSITE [with gratitude]

The kât'a, k'om, mum'o, kSt'o, bini'o, jâmc'o, and jâš'i

Native Names: kât'a, k'om, mum'o, kSt'o, bini'o, jâmc'o, and jâš'i, all speaking dialects of a single language.

Other Names: kântozi, kâmozi, kuštozi (Pashto names), "Katir", "Kam" (Robertson [1896 ]), "Bashgali" (from Khowar bašgali 'Nuristani; person from bašgal [the lanDai sin Valley]').

Location: the kt'ivi (Kântivâ) Valley in central Nuristân, the Râmg'al and kul'em Valleys of upper Laghmân (western Nuristân), the lânDâi s'in Valley of eastern Nuristân, some tributary valleys of the kun'aR (Kunar) River in Afghanistan, and pockets along the Afghanistan border in Chitrâl District, Pakistan.

http://users.sedona.net/~strand/Nuristani/Kamkata/kamkata.html


By TRUTHFUL on Monday, August 23, 2004 - 1:23 pm:

FEAR,
RESPECT,
AND HATRED!!!

[1]
Writes Scott Robertson: ".......The Kams hold much better together, and it is probable that it is for this very reason that, although not a numerous people, THEY ARE GREATLY RESPECTED by neighboring tribes, as well as by Chitralis and Pathans..." [Ref: The Kaffirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 84, Sir Scott Robertson].

[2]
Again observes same Scott Robertson: “All the neighboring Musalman tribes HAVE INTENSE HATRED OF THE KAFIRS, with the exception, perhaps of the Kunar valley Gabar villagers and Minjanis. This does not arise, I am convinced, from religious prejudices....…as much as from the injuries the Musalmans have had from the Kafirs through the long ages. Similarily, the Kafirs love to dance to Gish (their god of war) after killing the Musalmans, but their hatred of the Afghans is far more than religious fanaticism. Even in times of remote past, it has kept the two people at bitter feud. BOTH KAFIRS AND THE AFGHANS ARE BRIGANDS BY INSTINCT, AND BOTH ARE CARELESS OF HUMAN LIFE. PERHAPS THE KAFIRS ARE THE WORST OF THE TWO IN BOTH RESPECTS, but the Afghan makes the account more than even by his added perfidy and cunning.” [Ref: The Kaffirs of Hindukush, 1896, pp 567-68, Sir George Scott Robertson].

[3]
BUT CLINCHER IS THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT OF SCOTT ROBERTSON:
"...The Chtralis declared to me that the Kams and the Wei tribes are the FIERCEST and MOST INTRACTABLE of all Kaffir tribes, while of those two, the Kam were the MOST TO BE DREADED FOR THEIR MILITARY PROWESS. [Ref: The Kaffirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 2-3, Sir Scott Robertson].

PERSONAL COMMENT: It appears that the Mohamdans' respect for the Kams comes simply because of their military prowess, since power naturally commands respect. Otherwise, there is stated to be centuries-old feud hatred among the Kafirs and the Mohamadans. And ironically, many of the Mohamdans clan, especially the eastern Afghans, are also descended from the ancient Kambojs!.

TRUTHFUL


By TRUTHFUL on Monday, August 23, 2004 - 10:58 am:

THE KAFIRS =DESCENDENTS OF ANCIENT KAMBOJAS

Writing on Kafir population of Kafirstan/Nuristan, Donal N. Wilber, an American scholar states:

"They [Kafirs] appear to be the decadent descendents of a more civilized race and a mixture of three elements: an extremely ancient element related to to the oldest known population of the central Himalayans**; an element with resemblances to the Kurds; and a type that shows a combination of Dinaric and Nordic traits and may go back to the most ancient proto-type of these races, PRESERVED IN THE MIDST OF AN INDO-ARYAN ASCENDENCY. It is quit certain, at any rate, that THE NURISTANIS ARE AMONG THE OLDEST ETHNIC ELEMENTS COMPOSING THE AFGHAN PEOPLE, AND UNIQUE IN THEIR RECORD OF HAVING REMAINED UNAFFECTED BY ANY OF THE MAJOR RELIGIONS UNTIL THE END OF THE NINTEENTH CENTURY."

"Parts of Nuristan formed a portion of the Greek strappy of the Paropamisadea in the fouth and third centuries BC. The people were then called Kambojas and described as of mixed Indo-Iranian descent***. Possibly they occupied a much wider area then and were gradually forced... into their present mountains by Moslem onslaught. One of their principal tribes is still called Kam or Kamoz/Kamtoz." [(Afghanistan, its people, its society, its culture, Donal N. Wilber, 1962, p 80, 311); cf Kamoz of Scott Robertsen , Camoujees of Elphinstone, H. M. Wilson]


cf: W. K. FRASER-TYTLER/M.C. GILLET: "All that seem at all certain that parts of modern Kaffirstan formed a portion of Greek Strappy of Paropamisade in 3/4th c BC and the people were then called Kambojas who were of mixed Indo-Iranian descent***......In fact the scholars are of the opinion that Kamboja and Kapisha, the native city of Adjoining Greek capital might be identical..."
[Afghanistan..A Study of Political Developments in Central and Southern Asia, 1967, W. K. Fraser-Tytler, M. C. Gillet]

cf "...here in Kaffirstan, we find the last relics of the Greek occupation of Bacteria, and here are certainly remnants of a yet more ancient PERSIAN STOCK with all the flotsam and Jetsam of high Asia intermingled.....They are, from the point view of Kabol court, all lumped under two denominations ...Siahposh and Lalposh" [The Gates of India, p 270, Dr Holdich]

**NOTE: They are known as Viron or Presun tribe. They have a very low forehead, close-set eyes, a broader nose a receding chin a darker skin color...and it is possible that the Presungelis represent the aboriginal inhabitants of the area.[Op cit Donald N Wilber, p 51]. Scott Robertson also notes this Presun Kafir population as very ancient and entirely different from the Siaposh tribes of Kams/Katirs[Kam/Kamoz, Kamtoz]. According to him, Presuns constitute aboriginal population, which was enslaved by the present dominant tribes.
[Op cit Scott Robertson, p 78-85].


*** Compare also: "...............the Vamsa Brahmana Kamboja Aupamanyava is spoken of as a pupil of Madragara, from which Vedic Index postulates a possible connection of Uttaramadras with the Kambojas, who probably had Iranian as well as Indian affinities ..." [Vedeic Index, I.84, 138, Dr A. B. Keith, Dr Mcdonnel; Also Indian as Known to Panini, p 50, Dr V. S. Aggarwala; cf An Ancient People of Panjab, the Udumbras, JA, 1926, p 11, Jeau Przyluski; cf: Ancient kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 170, Dr Kamboj]

[For further reference on Kafir/Kamboja connection, see: Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p132, Dr H. C. Raychaudhury, Dr P. N. Mukerjee; The Geographical Dictionery of ancient and Mediaval India, Nando Lal Dev; cf: An Account of the Kingdom of Caubol, M. Elphinstone, Vol II, p 375-77, fn p 619; Bombay Gaz, 1.I 408n; JRAS, 1842, 140; JSAB, 1874, 260n; Vishnu Purana, III, 292, H. H. Wilson,Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 44, 120, 46 Dr Kamboj; The Achemenids and India, p 13, Dr S. Chattopadhya etc etc].


By TRUTHFUL on Monday, August 23, 2004 - 3:38 am:

KAMBOJA/KAFIR CONNECTION:
SOME RELICS FROM THE PAST:

PART II

[2]

ANCIENT KAMBOJAS [DEMORCARCIES, REPUBLICS, OLIGARCHIES]

The ancient Kambojas are also stated to be following repulican constitution in governing their countries/tribes. As per Mahabharata evidences several REPUBLICS of the Kambojas are also stated to be fightiing on behalf of the Kaurvavas

Narayanashcha gopala kambojanah ca ye ganah...[Mahabharata 7/91/39]

Also, Kautalya's Arathashastra in its chapter on the SANGHAS/REPUBLICS, referers to the CORPORATIONS of the Kambojas and the Surashtra people. [See Kautalya Arathashastera, Chapter 11, THE SANGHAS]

Kamboja-Surashtra kshatrya-shrenadyo varta-shaster opajivin [Kautalya 11/1/4]

"The corporations of warriors (kshattriyasrení) of Kámbhoja, and Suráshtra, and other countries live by agriculture, trade and wielding weapons"
http://projectsouthasia.sdstate.edu/Docs/history/primarydocs/Arthashastra/

Dr Michael witzel interprets from Kautalya's evidence that the Kamboja, Surashtra etc were probably oligarchies rather than pure democracies.

But, Mahabharata clearly attests many GANAS OR REPULICS of the KAMBOJAS as stated above. Henvce no doubt about Kamboja republics. Thus the Kambojas had followed democratic constitutions since ancient times.

Some noted scholars even argue that the use of suffix LUK with KAMBOJA KSHATRYA JANA in the 4/1/175 of Panini's Ashtadhya [KAMBOJAL-LUK 4-1/175] is an apparent exception from rest of the fourteen KSHATRYAS JANAS of the Paninan era who were all Kshatrya monarchies. Hence Dr K. P. Jayswal and Dr J. L. Kamboj etc interpret KAMBOJAL-LUK that the pre-Panian kings of the Kambojas, in fact, may have been king-consuls [titular or nominal kings of the Kamboja Republics] and were probably more like the commander-in-chiefs, war leaders in the battlefields.

Any way, this shows that the ancient Kambojas did follow democratic constitutions where all the Kashatrya class was duly represented....[but not the artizens/slaves etc]

NOW THE KAFFIRS OF AFGHANISTAN
[SEE SOME GLIMPSES OF KAFFIAR DEMOCRACIES/OLIGARCHIES]

Scott Robertson: "...Kaffirs are theocratically all equal. They maintain this principle themselves. Actually there is an oligarchy or in some tribes an aristocracy. The affairs of tribes such as Kams [=Kamoz....Kamboj] are managed by a Jast nominally but actually by a small group of greybeards who at ordinary times, rule in a more or less an absolute way. The Katirs and the Madugalis submit to the rule of one individual, unless their cupidity is aroused, when all common rules apparently snap of their own accord.......the reason is thrown to the winds and the gtavest difficulties arise...[Op cit pp, 434, 197]

'The Kam ruling authority in ordinary times consists of three Jasts, who were also Mirs and the priests. They use their power tactfully, and always know the bent of public opinion"

KAFIR PARLIAMENT:
"Next to this inner council of Jasts comes the orators, a troublesome class, who have wonderful influence in exciting or convincing the people. Volubility, assurance, and a good voice are powerful amongst the Kafirs as elsewhere..............On all questions of policy, foreign or domestic, Kafirs sit in Parliament. and discuss the matter noisily Yet in ordinary times, the opinion of the inner council most likely previously agreed upon among themselves prevails.."[Op cit Scott Robertson, p 434-435]

"Kafir parliament is a strange sight. Clamour is wonderful. A Dozen men, perhaps try to speak at once; each has his own little group of listeners whose attention, if it wanders, he seeks to call by loud ejaculations of 'ai-ai'! or by little pokes in the ribs of with walking clubs. If some very exciting topic is being discussed, perhaps all are talkers and none are listeners, but as a rule, one of the tribal orator begins to speak , he gets the attention of greater part of the assembly, his efforts are being helped by shouted illustrations, or further arguments, by one or two of the admiring friends...Kafirs love to argue among themselves to decide on some definite line of action....Singly they are often reasonable, but when they go off in a mob or group themselves under a tree and begin excited discussion, it is practically impossible to foretell what they will decide. Moreove the discussion arrived at one day is most likely to be rescinded on the next day and reverted back on the third day. ........." [Op cit Scott Robertson, p 435-436]

"....A Kaffir society is strongly traditional....if a perplexed stranger asks explanation of certain practices or usages which are new to his experience, the reply will invariably be "Insta charaza" ('it is our custom'), and this will be said in a tone to imply that there is nothing more to be said on this subject!. Fear of ridicule is a powerful factor in preventing a Kafir from adopting novel procedures or inventing new rules for action..........On controversial issues, he will wait to have the matter settled by open tribal discussion" [Op cit Scott Robertson, p 438-439]

"The tyranny of the majority is very great. As a rule, the minority gives ways at once. Indeed it must be so, for the final argument is usually a threat. A Kaffir is accumtomed to rapidly calculate what would be his chances of success if the matter in the dispute were to end in fight and he deeply loves to fight with all the probabilities in his favour. If physical superioity is against him, he generally gives way at once acquiscing without rancor in the views of the majority. .In his own way, a Kafir has an immense amount of eastern fatality in his disposition. and is usually intelligent enough to distinguish between what is and what is not inevitable!"
[Op cit Scott Robertson, p 439]


cf: Relying on Scott Robertson, H. A. ROSE writes: "Inspite of their social gradations, the Kaffir clans are in theory democracies, but actually they are oligarchies and in some cases aristocracies" [Glossary of Tribes and Castes of Panjab and north-western Frontier Province, H. A. Rose, p 422]

It is intersting to note that the Panjab Kambojs, the counter-parts of Kams/Kamozes of Kaffirstan also settle their disputes by assembling the village elders/grey-beards or else through the Panchayat as far as possible....it's only a last resorts that they take to the Police or Law Courts


[3]
DISPOSAL OF THE DEADS:

The ancient Kambojas are known to be affined both to Iranians as well as Vedic Indians. Hence some Kambojas followed Vedic customs, while the others followed Zoroasrian customs. Thus the custom of disposing of deads by Kambojas of Trans/Cis-Hindukush regions under zoroastrian influence were apparently Zoroastrian like throwing the deads in open spaces to be devored by birds/carnivorous animals. It appears that by Alexandra's times, rather than just throwing the deads in open, some Kamboja clans of the Cis-Hindukush regions had started the practice of packing the deads in wodden coffins and placing them in the cemetery at the outer-skirts of their villages. This evidence comes to us from Alexandra's historians with regard to the clans of the Aspasios. As their name implies,(i.e Iranian ASPA=horse), the Aspasios apparently were Iranians Kambojas......the same as the Ashvayans of Paninin's Ashtadhyai ...4/1/110..The Ashvakayanas/Ashvaka Kambojas [with name derived from Sanskrit ASHVA] were, on the other hand, probably more under Indian cultural influence.

DISPOSAL OF THE DEADS BY KAM/KATIR KAFFIRS [Pre-1896 AD].
'The Kaffir custom of disposing their deads is to place the body in a booden coffin and and then place it outside the village in specially marked out place, or a hill'. [Op cit, Sir George Scott Robertson]


cf: DONALD N WILBER [Pre-1896 AD Secnario]
".....When an individual died, his body was placed in a wooden coffin set up without burrial at the outer skirts of the village.......[Op cit Donald Wilber, p 51].


By TRUTHFUL on Sunday, August 22, 2004 - 4:22 am:

KAFIR/KAMBOJ CONNECTIONS:

SOME RELICS FROM THE PAST:

KAFFIR TRIBES OF AFGHANISTAN ARE AMONG THE OLDEST ETHNIC ELEMENTS COMPOSING THE AFGHAN PEOPLE, AND UNIQUE IN THEIR RECORD OF HAVING REMAINED UNAFFECTED BY ANY OF THE MAJOR RELIGIONS UNTIL THE END OF THE NINTEENTH CENTURY. THIS IS BECAUSE THEY INHABIT THE IMPASSABLE DEFILES OF HINDUKUSH, PRACTICALLY ISLOLATED FROM REST OF THE WORLD. THUS IT IS NATURAL THAT THEY MUST HAVE KEPT UP MANY OF THEIR ANCIENT CUSTOMS, PRACTICES, USAGES AND INSTITUTIONS ALMOST INTACT.

ALSO WE UNDERSTAND THAT THE SIAPOSH TRIBES [KAMS/KATIRS/KAMOZES/KAMTOZ] ARE CONSIDERED THE MODERN REPRESNTATIVES OF ANCIENT KAMBOJAS. NOW LET US CONCENTRATE ON SOME KNOWN CUSTOMS/PRACTICES OF THE KAMS/KATIRS AND COMPARE THEM WITH THOSE FROM THE ANCIENT KAMBOJAS.

I will try to keep the things simple.

[1]
TWO SOCIAL CLASSES:

ASSALAYANA SUTTA OF MAJJIMA NIKKAYA:[II.149] attests that amongst the Kambojas and Yavanas, there were only TWO CLASSES in the society......[AYYO ca ay DASO].....Masters and Slaves......Lords and Serfs

cf: "In the Assaláyana Sutta (M.ii.149) it is stated that in Yona and in Kamboja, and also in the neighbouring countries, there were, in the Buddha's time, only two classes of people, masters and slaves, and that a master could become a slave or vice versa. The Commentary (MA.ii.784) explains that a brahmin would go there with his wife for purposes of trade and would die there. His wife would then be compelled to work for her living and her children would become slaves."

http://www.palikanon. com/english/pali_names/ka/kamboja.htm

REGARDING KAFFIR SOCIAL GRADING:

Now if you examine the pre-1896 Kafir Society of Afghanistan, you will find that the Kafirs society of Siahposhes i.e. Kams and Katirs [=Kamoz/Kamtoz of Robertson, Camoje/Caumoje of Elphinstone/Wilson] was also divided mainly into two classes ...TRIBALMEN/THE LORDS and THE SLAVES or SERFS/ARTISANS. And interstingly, the Kafir two class society was not rigid like the Brahmanical Chaturvarna [four classes] society.

According Scott Robertson [pre-1896 AD]:, the Kafir society is basically divided into TWO SOCIAL CLASSES.........(1).the Tribalmen and (2) the serfs/slaves. The the Tribalmen owned land, property and could have a say/vote in the Kafir parliament. The slaves weree either Artizen classes or else bonded to their masters and were considered chattel i.e personal property. They could be sold of/disposed of at will... [Kafirs of Hindukush, 1896, Sir George Scott Robertson, pp 73-84]. The master is otherwise kind to his slaves who do all menial labor for him.

The First class comprised Mirs and Priests, Jasts (elders/seniors), all members of large/small septs. They owned property, land and had a voice/vote in the Kafir parliament.

The second class consisted of members belonging to distinctly inferior family but freemen like sheperds etc AND the slaves like artizen class.They could not participate in the Kafir parliament.

cf: "Kafir tribal structure described by Robertson was similar to that of other tribes in Afghanistan, but in addition to the tribesmen, there were two non-tribal classes, the poor freemen and slaves. Slaves were usually war captives although they could be purchased from other Kafirs. The house slaves lived with the family that owned them and enjoyed higher status than did the artisan slaves who were treated much like occupational castes were in India........'[Op cit Donald N Wilber, p 51-52]

Continued....in part II


By TRUTHFUL on Sunday, August 22, 2004 - 5:22 am:

KAMBOJAS KAFIRS OF AFGHANISTAN

USEFUL INFORMATION:

[1]
THE KAMS ARE THE MOST RESPECTED/MILITARILY DREADED KAFIR CLAN IN KAFFIRSTAN

Writes Scott Robertson: "...The Chtralis declared to me that the Kams and the Wei tribes are the FIERCEST and MOST INTRACTABLE of all Kaffir tribes, while of those two, the Kam were the MOST TO BE DREADED FOR THEIR MILITARY PROWESS. [Ref: The Kaffirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 2-3, Sir Scott Robertson].


Scott Robertson: ".......The Kams hold much better together, and it is probable that it is for this very reason that, although not a numerous people, they are greatly respected by neighboring tribes, as well as by Chitralis and Pathans..........[Op cit, Scott Robertson, p 84]

"..........The Kams are vitually the kings of Kafirstan,........." [op cit, Scott Robertson].


'The Katirs [i.e Kamoz], Kams [i.e Kamtoz] and the Wei tribes are mainly descended from the ancient Indian population of Eastern Afghanistan....."***[Op cit p 157]

***Eastern and northern Afghanistan has been stated by the scholars to have foermed the ancient Kamboja land.
*******************************************************************

[2]

FOR KAM=KAMOZ and KATIRS=KAMTOZ
[region and tribal name, see below]

"..The upper part of the Bashgul valley is called Katirgul [Lutdeh in Chitrali or Kamtoz in Pashtu], the middle portion Muman [Madugal in Chitrali] and lower part Kam [Kamdesh in Chitrali, or Kamoz in Pashtu] (Op cit, p 71, Sir Scott Robertson, also cf p 76, where erroneously, the Kartirs are called Kamoz and Kams are called Kamtoz]

Katirgul is occupied by the Katir Kaffirs where Kamdesh is occupied by the Kam/Kamoz Kaffirs.

KAMOZ == KAMBOZ == KAMBOJ

*******************************************************************

[3]
A FUNNY KAM/KATIR TRADITION

"...The Katirs in the Bashgul valley informed me that they came from west, and were once a part of a numerous tribe which divided into two parties. One division consisting of the wealthy and their notable persons went to London, while the other comprising the menials settled in Kaffirstan. This depreciation of themselves is in the true spirit of oriental politeness. They warned me not to trust the Kams or to believe them for an instant if they declared that they and I were descended from a common ancestors; for it was notorious that it was the Katirs and not the Kams who wewre of my race, the Kams being really more akin to Russians......" [op cit., p 159-160]

***********************************************************************

[4]
KAFFIR ALWAYS CLINGS TO HIS BLOOD:
'The Kafir is always loyal to his blood. It is the race and the blood the Kafir clings to...about religion he is comparatively indifferent. If a Kafir slave boy, sold out of his tribe by its members were executed in Chitral, he must be avenged by his tribe"..[op cit p 192].


cf: WARIS SHAH ON KAMBOHS/KAMBOJS OF PANJAB:

"Kukad Kaan Kamboh saluuk tina, nahin kise di ihna brabari ve'

This equally shows that the Kambojs of Panjab also similarly cling to their blood.


By TRUTHFUL on Wednesday, August 18, 2004 - 1:39 pm:

[1] ASHVAGAN =AFGHAN = LAND OF HEROES [LAND OF CAVALARY-MEN]**

The non-Afghan invaders first settled in Afghanistan before invading the Indo-Pak subcontinent and all the invaders made use of Afghan soldiers to carry out their military campaigns. These non-Afghan invaders made use of Afghan soldiers simply because the Afghans were famous for their acts of heroism; and this explains why the original name of Afghanistan was Ashvagan, meaning land of the heroes and from Ashvagan the name evolved into Afghanistan.

http://jang. com.pk/thenews/nov2003-daily/13-11-2003/oped/o6.htm

[2] ASHVAGAN =AFGHAN ='LAND OF THE HORSES'***
And now, many years later, my eyes have been opened by a host of personal events, and a series of good people, to a new point in my life where I quietly practice the religion which I publicly acclaimed more than twenty years ago in a long-gone and war-free Ashvagan (the Persian word for Afghanistan, meaning "LAND OF HORSES"). I no longer wear guns. My sword collects dust and sleeps with her memories. But most importantly, I try in my daily life to put into practice what the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) taught, mainly to love my fellow man and to worship naught but God.

http://www.thelongridersguild. com/Word02.htm

[3] ASHVAGAN =AFGHAN='LAND OF THE HORSES'***
Poor Afghanistan. The Persian rule in Ashvagan ('LAND OF HORSES') as the area was then known, was overthrown in 1747 and a monarchy established in the land thereafter to be known as Afghanistan. The Shahs and Amirs ruled until 1973 when the country became a republic. In 1994 the Taliban converted the republic into an emirate.

http://www.dawn. com/weekly/cowas/20011104.htm

[4] ASHVAGAN =AFGHAN='LAND OF THE HORSES'***
Ashvagan, the ‘LAND OF HORSES,’ as Afghanistan was once known long, long ago, formed itself into a state in 1747. The first Amir, Ahmad Khan ruled well and wisely (1747-73). His brothers and sons succeeded him, the last of the family, brother Mahmud being overthrown in 1818. Thereafter, for eight years, anarchy prevailed. It was during this period that Afghanistan became the main playing field for the Great Game, started in 1824 and which now, almost two centuries later, still continues.

http://www.lib.virginia.edu/area-studies/SouthAsia/SAserials/Dawn/1998/05Sep98.html#ashv

[5] ASHVAGAN=AFGHAN = 'LAND OF THE HORSES'***
Et maintenant, plusieurs années plus tard, mes yeux se sont ouverts par une foule d'évènements personnels, et par une série de gens bons, et je suis arrivé à un nouveau point dans ma vie où je pratique tranquillement la religion que j'ai acclamé publiquement il y a plus de vingt ans dans un Ashvagan (le mot Perse pour Afghanistan, qui veut dire "Terre des Chevaux") disparu depuis longtemps et paisible. Je ne porte plus les armes. Mon épée est couverte de poussière et dort avec sa mémoire. Mais le plus important, c'est que j'essaie au quotidien de mettre en pratique ce que le Prophète Mahomet (PBUH*) nous a enseigné, surtout d'aimer ses semblables et de ne vénérer que le bon Dieu.

TTRANSLATION: "And now, several years later, my eyes opened by a crowd of personal events, and by a series of good people, and I arrived at a new point in my life where I quietly practise the religion which I acclaimed publicly there is more than twenty years in Ashvagan (the word Perse for Afghanistan, which wants to say "LAND OF THE HORSES") for a long time disappeared and peaceful. I do not carry any more the weapons. My sword is covered with dust and sleeps with its memory. But most important, it is that I try with the daily newspaper into practice to put what the Prophet Mahomet (PBUH *) taught us, especially to like its similar and to venerate only good God."

http://www.worldtrailrides. com/1voyageacheval/chevalislam.htm
http://www.worldtrailrides. com/pdf_files/chevalislam.pdf

**COMMENT -1: ASHVAGAN=LAND OF HEROES OR CAVALRY-MEN

Mahabharata especially referes to the Kambojas as ASHVA-YUDHA-KUSHALAH...i.e. THE KAMBOJAS AN EXPERT CAVALARY-MEN OR HORSEMEN..

See below Ancient Sanskrit evidence:

tathA yavana KAMBOJA mathurAmabhitash cha ye /.
ete ashva.yuddha kushalA dAkShiNAtyAsi charmiNaH//
[Mahabharata 12/105/5]

cf: "..... The Kambojas of Ashoka and of the Sanskrit and Pali texts thus occupy exactly
the same position as Arrian's Assakenois (Ashvakas). We thus get another name for the Kambojas, i.e Ashvakas. The Kambojas were famous for their horses and as cavalar-men (ashva-yuddha-kushalah); Ashvaka, 'horsemen' was the term popularly applied to them" [Hindu Polity, A Constitutional History of India in Hindu Times, Part I II, 1972, p 140, Dr K. P. Jayswal]

***COMMENT-2:
ASHVAGAN=AFGHAN= 'LAND OF THE HORSES'

Compare KAMBOJO-ASSANAM.AYATANAM of the Buddhist Jataka SAMANGAVILASINI [P.T.S.]
Vol I, p 124, which expression literally means 'THE KAMBOJA COUNTRY IS THE 'LAND OR HOME OF THE HORSES'.

Cf Dr B. C. Law:
"The horses of Kamboja were famous throught all periods of Indian History. In the Sumnagalavilasini, Kamboja is spoken of as home of horses [Kambojo assanam ayatnam....Sumangalavilasini Vol I, p 124]. The great Epic is full of references to the excellent horses of Kamboja..................."[Some Kshatrya Tribes of Ancient India, p 238, 'The Kambojas', Dr B. C. Law]

http://punjabi.net/talk/messages/1/52683.html?1075172231
http://punjabi.net/talk/messages/1/21776.html?1020043322

cf Dr J. L. KAMBOJ:
"The Buddhist texts like Samangavilasini, Manorathapurani, Visudhimagga, Kunala Jataka etc refers to the Kamboja land as 'Kambojo Assanama ayatanam'........i.e.Kamboja ...the 'HOME OF HORSES'............." [Ancient Kamboja, People And the Country, 1981, p 26, 124, 244, Dr Kamboj]

cf Dr J. C. Vidyalankar:
"KAMBOJO ASSAANAMAYATANAM =KAMBOJA ........ THE LAND OF HORSES .."[Ref: Bharrat Bhumi Aur Unke Nivasi, , 1930, p 274-304, Dr J. C. Vidyalankar; also Bhartya Itihaas ki rup rekha, p 526-537]

cf Dr H. C. RAYCHAUDHURY, Dr B. N MUKERJEE:
"............. With the sxpression Assanam Ayatanam ...'LAND OF HORSES' used by Pali Texts in reference to Kambojas, [Dictionery of Pali Proper Names, I, 826, cf Mahabharata VI, 99, 3] may be compared to the names Aspasios and Assakenois given by classical writers to the sturdy people living in the Alishang and Swat valleys in the days of Alexander (Camb Hist Ind I, 352 n)" [Ref: Politicla History of Ancient India, 1996, p 133, p 216 foot note 2, Dr H. C. Raychaudhury, Dr B. N. Mukerjee, while writing on Kambojas]

cf: K. S. DARDI
".....Panini has used tewrm Ashvakayana for Kambojas..... This Sanskrit Ashvakayan or Aashvakan means the 'THE HOME OF THE HORSES'.. or the 'THE LAND OF THE HORSES'......" [Ref: These Kamboj People, 1979, p 193, K. S. Dardi]

Also compare the following from Buddhist website:

KAMBOJA (KAMBOJAKA)
"One of the sixteen Mahájanapadas which, with Gandhára, belonged, not to the Majjhimadesa but, evidently, to the Uttarápatha (A.i.213; iv.252, 256, 260). It is often mentioned as the FAMOUS BIRTH PLACE OF HORSES (assánam áyatanam) (E.g., DA.i.124; AA.i.399; Vsm.332; also J.iv.464)......."

http://www.palikanon. com/namen/ka/kamboja.htm

COMMENT-3:

In Indo-Iranian languages,
'g' can replace 'k' or vice versa
so also 'p' and 'b' or
'p' and 'f'.
't' and 'd'

Hence the Sanskrit ASHVAKA or ASHVAKAN which comes from ASHVAKAYAN of Panini's Ashtadhyai [IV-1.99] becomes ASHVAGAN.[k ==>>g]. Hence, according the above writers:

ASHVAKAN ==>> ASHVAGAN ==> AFGHAN [=LAND OF THE HORSES....i.e THE ANCIENT KAMBOJA LAND].


By TRUTHFUL on Wednesday, August 18, 2004 - 3:50 pm:

Dr Ishwa Mishra's Views on Rajputs

[Appeared in Indiancivilization Yahoo discussion forum]

To assign a foreign (mostly Hunnic and Scythic) origin to the Rajaputras, was perhaps completely in the line of AIT-thinking. Having perhaps also branded Hinduism at that time as too passive or peaceloving (read: weak), the warring leaders must have risen from a foreign influx.

First of all, I believe that the word Scyth and Saka/Shaka should be distinguished. The Skuthai are more connected with the Kshudrakas, but never re-entered Indian soil, as they were busy in the steppes and the Pontic area. And the Shakas are connected with the Kambojas (see Mahabharata, where Pahlava, Parada and Shakas are mentioned as Kamboja Rshi-kas).

Though they (Scyths and Saka/Shaka) were very closely connected, they were not similar.

The Scythians were called by the Assyrians Ashkuza or Ishkuza; as with the Kimmerians or Gimmiri, this word also appears to have found its way into the Old Testament; one of Gomer's (Gimmiri) three sons, in Genesis I.x.12, is called Ashkenaz, which has given us the modern Hebrew word, Ashkenazi [Ashvakayana?].
Many tribes in the farther NW were Indian, specially within the Hindukush areas! See the classical references of Indian tribes from Alexander's time on (Panini has also mentioned them, like the Ashvakayanas, Ashvayanas, Maunjayanas, Triravatis, Dviravatis, etc. if I am not Wrong).

The Northern Massagetai of Transoxiana were Shakas, closely connected with the Mashaka Ashvakayanas of Gandhara (Assakenoi with the capital Massaga. Mashaka is also a famous SamaVedic teacher of the Kauthuma- Parashara Charana). While the Kambojas lived in Gandhara, the Parama- Kambojas lived beyond the HinduKush, which is Bahlika. These Kambojas went to W.China too.Other Gandhara-Kambojas went to Kandahar and Seistan, establishing another Shakasthana, from the original Shaka- dvipa, modern Rechna Doab, with the Kathaioi capital Shakala-Sangla

(The Massagetai were responsible for the migration of the Skuthai out of the Oxus area, who on their turn caused migrations of the Kimmerians, according to the History of Herodotos). We have the Sogdoi in Sindh, but also in Sogdiana,etc. at least in the 4th c BC. The Persian Inscriptions place the Shakas in Indian territories. Having said this, if any of the Rajputs (of NW) are 'Scythic' or 'Saka', they are still Indians.

The four principal Agnikulas are from the subcontinent. Chauhana is simply a Prakritic form, that is why it looks so foreign.

Chauhaana/Chahvaana/Chahamaana must have had a second part *vaahana which became contracted to vaa-ana and vaana. Vahana was a part in a name which was very often used by kings. The first part may have been either 'chapa' or another form. (The Bhavishya Purana gives the form 'Chapahaani').

The Bhavishya connects the Agnikula Vamshas with 4 Gotras, which may explain the word 'Agni': they were perhaps in the same line as the sharmaka-varmakas, like the Licchavis earlier, and other Shastropajivi communities of pre-Gupta Era. The martial mode of life was very important especially in the border areas of the subcontinent.

The society was much more flexible than is mostly assumed and mentioned. If the Malloi-Malya/Bala Janapada, a branch of the Kathaioi Janapada(Katha Parashara Gotra) were very closely working with Oxydrakai-Kshudraka Janapada, then we have here Shastropajivi republican Brachmanoi working closely and equally with republican Kshudrakas-Shuudrakas (the Panjabi Abhiras). These two communities were two of the most fiercest opponents of Alexander in Multan- SPanjab.

The Malla-Bala under leadership of Kanakasena, contemporary of SamudraGupta and later his general, went perhaps south to the Sogdoi (*Shugdrakas or Shuudrakas) of Sind and later to Gujarat to Abhira and other Shaka areas, after the raids of Alexander.

Regards,

Ishwa


By TRUTHFUL on Sunday, August 15, 2004 - 11:57 pm:

The Mountain Meru

".....Our sources on Alexander are focussed on warfare, but they give some information about the Gandarians too. Their towns were surrounded by brickwork fortifications, they fought with spears and arrows -no swords and shields are mentioned- and their leaders wore cuirasses. They had beautiful buffaloes (Alexander wanted to send them to Macedonia), and their towns were ruled by an aristocracy. Once, a queen is mentioned. And the Gandarians buried their dead in wooden coffins, which were placed on the hills around their towns. This custom still exists among the Kafirs***, a local tribe near Chitral."

http://www.livius.org/ga-gh/gandara/gandara.html

The custom of disposal of the deads among the Kafirs was first described by Sir Gerorge Scott Robertson, an English Investigator, who had spent 3-4 years with the Kam Kaffirs in Kamdesh in Kaffirstan [now Nuristan]. He has studied these people extensively and wrote his observation in an excellent book called 'The Kaffirs of Hindukush published in 1896. He states that it is a custom among the Kaffirs to put the dead body in the wooden coffin which is then placed outside the village in a specially marked out place.

Also Donald N Wilber:
Writing on Kaffirs/Nurustanis whom he calls the descendents of ancient Kambojas, Donald N Wilber, an American Scholar notes: "When an individual dies, his body is placed in a wooden coffin set up without burrial at the outer skirts of the village..."[Afghanistan, its people, its society, its culture,1962, Donald N. Wilber, p 51]

FOR KAFFIRS BEING DESCENDENTS OF ANCIENT KAMBOJAS
[See Afghanistan, its people, its society, its culture,1962, Donald N. Wilber, p 51, 311 Donald Wilber; also ref: Afghanistan Study of Political Developments in Central and Southern Asia, 1967, W. K. Fraser-Tytler, M. C. Gillet; An Account of the kingdom of Caubol, Vol II, p 375-77, Elphinstone, Bombay Gaz, I. 1, 498,n; JRAS., 1843, 140; JASB, 1874, 160 n; Political Sistory of Ancient India, 1996, p 133, Dr H. C. Raychaudhury; Sidhant Kaumudi, Acharya R. R. Pande, 1966, p 20-22; The Achemenids and India, p 13, Dr S. Chattopadhya; Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 43-44, 120, 223 etc etc]

cf: "There is an apparent trace of their [Kambojas'] name in the Camojees of Kafirstan , who may have retreated to mounbtains before the advance of Turk tribes. [Vishnu Purana, III, 289-92, H. H. Wilson]


By TRUTHFUL on Sunday, August 15, 2004 - 3:06 am:

ALEXANDRA'S COMPAIGN 326 BC

The Punjab
"By the end of 327, Alexander the Great had secured the northern frontier of his kingdom and was ready for a new campaign: to India, a country that the Greeks already knew from the Histories by Herodotus of Halicarnassus, but his reports were incredible (click here for the famous story about the gold digging ants). Invading India was like invading a country of fairy tales".

"It was an unnecessary war, and its only cause must have been Alexander's curiosity and desire for war. If he had any doubts, these were suppressed when he remembered that his mythological ancestors Dionysus and Heracles had visited India, something that needed to be emulated. Another argument to move to the east must have been the presence of two Indian princes at Alexander's court, SISICOTTUS** and OMPHISs (or Sasigupta and Ambhi, to use their Indian names). The first was at war with the tribe of the Assacenes [ASHVAKA-KAMBOJAS], the second was afraid of king Porus (Puru) and tried to enlist foreign help against his enemy."

"Alexander's campaign through the foothills of the Himalayas was in fact little short of genocide. When Alexander was lightly wounded during the siege of a hill fortress and it was taken, all defenders were massacred. In another valley, the terrorized population fled after destroying their own villages. A sad story is that about Alexander's men who, during a cold night, burned the small wooden boxes they found in the neighborhood of a town they were besieging. Too late they discovered that these boxes were coffins***; the population was shocked about this sacrilege. When the capital of the Assacenes, a town called Massaga (near modern Chakdarra), surrendered, Alexander demanded that the mercenaries that had defended the town joined his own army, but after they had placed themselves at Alexander's mercy, he ordered their extermination."

http://www.livius.org/aj-al/alexander/alexander13.html

**SISICOTTOS: CHIEFTAIN SISICOTTUS HIMSELF APPEARS TO HAVE BELONGED TO ASHVAKA KAMBOJA CLAN. HE HAD ENEMITY WITH THE ASHVAKAS OF KUNAR/SWAT VALLEY. ORIGINAALY SISIGUPTA BELONGED TO CIS-HINDUKUSH REGION, BUT DUE TO POLITICAL REASONS, HE HAD LEFT HIS LAND AND GONE TO BACTERIA. THIS SISICOTTOS HAD HELPED ALEXANDRA IN HIS MILITARY COMPAIGN AGAINST THE CHIEFTAIN OF SOGADHA [TRANS-OXIAN COUNTRY] AND LATER AGAINST CIS-HINDUKUSH TRIBES/CLANS INCLUDING ASPASIOSA/ASSAKENOIS ALSO. AFTER THE ASVHAYANAS/ASHVAKAYANAS[Aspasiuos/assakenois of classical writings] HAD BEEN REDUCED BY ALEXANDRA IN 326, SISICOTTOS WAS MADE GOVERNOR OF THEIR COUNTRY. DR J. C. VIDYALANKAR CALLS THIS SASIGUPTA AS THE KAMBOJA CHIEFTAIN.[ITIHAAS PARVESH, pp 115-118, Dr VIDYALANKAR]

***WOODEN COFFINS: This reference is extremely important and probably refers to the Kamboja ancestors of modern Kam/Katir clans [Kamtoz Kamoz clans] of Kaffirstan. Till as late as 1895 AD, it was a custom among the Kam/Katir Kaffirs of Kaffirsthan to dispose off their deads by placing them into wooden box coffins and then leaving the wooden coffins exposed in the open marked-out space, outside the village [Ref: The Kaffirs of Hindukush, 1895, Robertson Scot]. It appears that the Kams/Katirs of Kaffirsthan had continued this ancient custom till the end of 19th c AD until they were converted to Islam.

Apparently, this practice of disposing their deads was a Non-vedic....probably was of Zoroastrian influence....... either throwing them in open spaces to be devored by birds/animals or confining them into coffins and then leaving them into open spaces. This information again very well matches the Indo-Iranian characeristics of the ancient Kambojas.


By TRUTHFUL on Monday, August 09, 2004 - 12:13 am:

ZUBAIRI VIEW OF THE KAMBOH/KAMBOJ ORIGIN:

The Zubair Kambohs were probably the earliest section of the Kambojs to have converted to Islam. They were very powerful during Lodhi, Pathan and Moghul rule in India and occupied very high military and civil positions as ruling elites.

http://kambojsociety. com/moslem.asp

But like most other Moslems, they trace their origin from Mecca/Medina and profess to be related to the Prophet. It has to be noted that it has almost become a fashion among the Moslems of North-west to claim their ancestral links with Prophet Mohammad.[Scot Robertson, Caroe Olaf]. So much so, even the Kam/Kamoz Kaffirs [now Nuristanis] who were islamised only as late as 1895, claim themselves as originally from Arab, some say from Koreish tribe. [The Kafirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 158, Goerge Scott Robertson].


READ THE FOLLOWING TEXT FROM ZUBAIRE SITE:

Hazrat Zubair (R.A.A.)

"This write up is based up on Tabaqat-e-Ibn-e-Saad, "Al-Mashahir" by Hakim Faiz Ahmad of Marehra, 'Khandan-i-Zubairi Kanbhavi' by Moulvi Hasan Ahmad Zubairi, Kitab-i-Zeest by Al-Haj Mohammad Zubair, and the Suharwardy Aulias. of Lahore."

"Zubairis are descendents of Hazrat Zubair (R.A.A.) bin Awam, who was closely related to our Prophet Mohammad (S.A.A.W.) through several family connections. His mother Hazrat Safia was the real sister of the father of the Prophet. The family tree of the Prophet and Hazrat Zubair meet on Kallab at the fifth generation of the Quraish of Macca."

..............................................................................................................................

"Hazrat Zubair (R.A.A.) had twelve sons and nine daughters from several wives and thus he was the head of a large family."

"His three famous sons in Islamic History are Abdullah, Musab and Urwah. During Amir Mawiyah's rule, Hazrat Abdullah (R.A.A.) did not acknowledge Yazid as successor to the Caliphate. After the battle of Karbla, Hazrat Abdullah bin Zubair (R.A.A.) was proclaimed as Caliph of Islam at Mecca and ruled a part of the Islamic world for about nine years (from 64. A.H. to 73 A.H.) Hazrat Musab was his governor over Northern Areas, but in the mean time the Ummayads, under Abdul Malik (who controlled Syria) began to assert themselves and became so strong that they attacked Mecca in 73. A.H. Though Hazrat Abdullah (R.A.A.) was killed in the vicinity of Ka'aba, but his bravery was acknowledged by every historian of that period. Before that event, Hazrat Musab, who was governor of Kufa was attacked by Abdul Malik and due to the betrayal of the Iraqis, he was also killed near Busra."

"Hazrat Abdullah and Hazrat Musab were known for their bravery and fighting spirits. They were not as intriguers as the Ummayads were, and therefore they were defeated because of the betrayal of the Iraqis and some other tribes, who sold their loyalties to the Ummayads. Thus the first and the last caliphate of the Zubairis ended with the martyrdom of Hazrat Abdullah Ibne-Zubair (R.A.A.) in 73 A.H."

KAMBOHS ORIGINATED FROM URWAH, THE THIRD SON OF HAZRAT ZUBAIR:

"Third famous son of Hazrat Zubair (R.A.A.) was Urwah, who was a man of letters and a historian. He was the first Muslim historian who wrote a book on the wars (Maghazi) of the Prophet of Islam. In Al-Nadim (an Encyclopedia of the Arabic works written upto the Abbasid period) several books of Hazrat Urwah are also mentioned in it. The Zubairis started migration from Mecca and Madina towards Sindh, some 40 or 50 years after its conquest by Mohammad bin Qasim. They settled in a place known as "KANBAH", which was near modern Dadu. Shamsuddin A1 Bashari, a renowned historian and a geographer traveled in Sindh extensively in the 4th century of Hijra and in his Book he wrote that: "I travelled the whole area, which is known as "KANBAYAH" which is the abode of Al-Zubair. KANBAYAH became "KANBAH" and later it changed into "KANBOH"*due to linguistic variations in the Persian period. Though this linguistic change became common, the people did not change and they are still having their special trends." (page 475 of the Lyden Edition, Germany), as referred by Al-Haj Mohammad Zubair in his book "Kitab-i- Zeest (Book of life) Page 123".

*KANBOH=KAMBOH

"Latest observation about the Zubairis is by Mr. Khalid Chaudhry who visited a number of countries in search of belongingness and whose article appeard in Daily "Dawn" (Magazine Section dated February 21, 1999) and he writes that; "Our people Pakistanis, came from every where, beginning with the Aryans, to the Greeks, the Mongols, Central Asians, and the Arabs. We now have such family names as Zuberis speaking Urdu, but usually having semitic noses, lighter complexions and Arab origins likewise for the Arabs of Sindh, but who speak Sindhi" Our Arabic origin, special features and trends, and distinguished mental faculties made us a prominent family in the Indo- Pakistan sub-continent". **

Second migration of the Zubairis took place by the end of the 4th centry A.H. From Sindh to Multan, when Sindh was overrun by the Carmathians, a Shia Sect., opposed to the Abbasid Caliphate, at that time.

The Zubairis

http://www.islamicaweb. com/archive/read/t-7616.html
http://www.islamicaweb. com/forums/showthread.php?t=7616

** IMPORTANT REMINDER: Accept the reality Mr Khalid Chaudhury Zubairi Kamboh Sahib. Clean up your mirror and then look into it very carefully. You will notice that you have Aryan and not semitic nose, an Aryan and not semitic complexions/features. And therefore, you indeed have Aryan and not a semitic blood and lineage. This is a fact of history you need to accept...sooner the better. You are indeed from ancient Indo-Iranian Aryan Kamboj blood...Dont follow the mirage. You need to be aware of your actual Kamboj lineage...a very glorious, prideful and ancient lineage to all intents and puposes...

This is fact of history.

BTW: FOLLOWING IS ANOTHER ZUBERI KAMBOH SITE.
http://www.zubairy.8m. com/photo_album.html


By TRUTHFUL on Saturday, July 31, 2004 - 11:16 pm:

The ASSAKENOI people of the classical writings are ASSAKAN of Pali Texts and ASHVAKAN/ASHVAKAYAN of the Sanskrit literature. ASSAKA = Horse people, cavaliers from ASSA.ka [also see KAMBOJO-ASSA.NAM.AYATANAM = Kamboja homeland of horses.......as refered in Manarathpurni, Sumangavilasini, Kunalajataka and Visudhimagga of Buddhist literature. In Mahabharata, the same people are refered to as ...... 'Kambojah.......ite Ashva.yuddha.kushalah= i.e. the Kambojas, an expert cavalary....MBH 12/101/5].

These people lived in Swat valley, the ancient Land of Kambojas. Their capital city was Massaga or Mashkavati. Unlike the Gandharas of Taxila who submitted without giving a fight, these brave Ashvakayan Kambojas [=Kamboj cavalary, =Horseriders, =horsepeople] defied Alexander in the very face, and along with their wives and daughters, these people
had fought a heroic battle against Alexander.....
...finally being overpowered by a well-trained and
world-class military forces of Alexander. The Ashvakas or Assakenoi Kambojs laid down heir lives,
Along with their wives and daughters, thus achieving a glorious martyrdom rather than submitting to the
foreign invaders.

This saga remains a glorious chapter of the Kamboj history. The tantalizing story of Ashvaka/Alexandra fight is told by Diodorus [Diodorus in McCrindle p 270....also Plutarch, Arrian, Curtius]

It is note worthy that Alexander was forced to enter into a peace treaty with the Ashvakas. And the proposal had come from Alexander himself [see Plutarch in McCrindle, p 306]. But later, Alexander flagrantly violated the treaty terms and attacked his opponents from behind and massacred the Abhisarean
Kambojas mercelessly.

PLUTARCH swears at this cowardly action of Alexandra saying: "This unheroic action will always remain an infamous blot on the military achievements of Alexander"

SANDERSON BECK: "The Assakenoi resisted Alexander with tens of thousands of cavalry and infantry in a fortress at Massaga. After the king was killed, the army was led by his MOTHER, Queen CLEOPHIS [Kripi in Sanskrit] and included the LOCAL WOMEN. After several days of heroic fighting, Alexander offered these brave people their lives if the mercenaries would agree to join his army; the city capitulated. But not wanting to fight other Indians, the seven thousand mercenaries tried to run away from the camp and were slaughtered by Alexander's soldiers".

http://www.san.beck.org/EC10-Social.html


By TRUTHFUL on Saturday, July 31, 2004 - 12:30 pm:

MORE ON ASSAKAN=ASHYVAKAN=ASHVAKAYAN=AFGHAN

"..............According to local tradition the eastern part of Hara ("Ghor"), where the Hari River rises, was once settled by a people referred to as "Assakan" and "Bnei Yisral" or Children of Israe l20. "ASSAKAN" was shortened to "Sak" or "Sok" and local Muslim lore equated the term with the ame "Isaac", father of Israel21. A dialectical variation of "ASSAKAN" is AFGHAN 22 and the names "Bnei Yisral" and "Afghan" were applied later to a group from Armenia who settled in the area after the original "Bnei Yisral" and "Assakan" had moved out23.................."

http://www.britam.org/3rd-Edition/The-Tribes-Chapter-Four.html

COMMENT:
It is baloney to relate the AFGHANS to the ISRAILIS.

But the article accepts connection between name AFGHAN and ASSAKA/ASSAKAN [=ASHVAKA/ASHVAKAN=ASHVAKAYANA of Panini's Ashtadhyai..4.1.110; cf : Asvayana of Panini's Ashtadhyai...6.4.174 = the ASSAKENOIS and the ASPASIOIS of classical writings. These Ashvayan/Ashvakayan people occupied Kunar/Swat valleys and their land was called Kambojo Assa.nam.ayatanamma..Kamboja land of horses in Buddhisat Texts like Sumangavilasini]

TRUTHFUL


By TRUTHFUL on Thursday, July 29, 2004 - 6:14 am:

INCORRECT:

**COMMENT-2: It is obvious that there is no life and force in the arguments of this author, who relates the Mong-2ols with the Sanskrit Ashvakas/Ashvakayanas/Asvayanas, Pali Assaka/Asmaka(?) and the Greek Assakenois/Aspasios. The Ashvakas are known to be living Swat/Kunar valleys since 4th c BC or much earlier....

CORRECTION:

**COMMENT-2: It is obvious that there is no life and force in the arguments of this author, who relates the Mongols with the Sanskrit Ashvakas/Ashvakayanas/Asvayanas, Pali Assaka/Asmaka(?) and the Greek Assakenois/Aspasios. The Ashvakas are known to be living Swat/Kunar valleys since 4th c BC or much earlier....

Inadvertent error is regretted.


By TRUTHFUL on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 10:39 pm:

ASHVAKAS/ASSAKAS...........THE KAMBOJAS

Greek and Roman References

ANOTHER VIEW:

"In a well-known and much repeated story, Herodotus (4th century B.C.) mentions a war-like people on the frontier of India, near to whom are found gold-digging ants. Herodotus provides the name Dadikai for one of the groups living on India's frontier, which was then the seventh satrapy of the Achaemenian empire. Writing much later, Strabo (64 B.C. to A.D. 23) and Pliny (A.D. 23 to A.D. 79) repeat Herodotus' story and name the war-like people Dardae. Alexander, whose travels provide much of the data for classical geography of India, apparently did not meet any Dard people, but he did go to a place called Daedala.

Curtius reports Alexander fought against people called Assakenoi in Daedala. Tucci assumes the Assakenoi were a Scythican tribe*** whose name derives from the word for horse (Tucci 1977:29). Herodotus' Dadikai may be the Persian name for the darada given in the Puranic lists, which Strabo and Pliny applied to the war-like people whom they equated with Curtius' Assakenoi. Hence, Herodutus' original citation appears to have been derived from Puranic sources. Finally, Ptolemy gives us a map that shows the Indus River arising in the country of the daradrai (map in McCrindle 1885), a term that appears to be received from Sanskrit epic and Puranic sources."*

http://www.monitor.net/~jmko/karakoram/dard.htm

*COMMENT-1: The Dardae were living north to Asakenois. Assakenois were living in Kunar/Swat Valleys. Where as Dardas were located north-west of Ksshmir. The Kambojas and Dardas are mentioned living to gether in Sanskrit literature [e.g. DARDAN SAHA KAMBOJAIRAJYAT PAKSHASNI....MBH 2/27/23: also cf: KAMBOJA DARDASHCHA BARBARA ANGLOKIKA......see Kirfel's text of Uttarapatha countries of Bhuvanakosha/Puranic literature etc] . The KAMBOJAS referenced here are the same as the ASSAKENOIS of the Classical writers who are referenced together with the DARDAE/DARDIKA.

cf: ANOTHER DIFFERING VIEW: "One of the tribes living in Swat (a mountain province of Pakistan, whose name derives from sanscrit Suvasto, country of the beautiful buildings) is called locally Assaka, the Assakenoi of the Greeks, see Tucci (1978). Now ASSA (prascrit) = ASVA (sanscrit) = ASPA (old Persian), means "horse", implying, with our interpretation of the word KA, the expressive meaning people of the horses. It is known that the Chinese called the ihnvading Mongols of Gengis Khan the People of the Horses.** In Spedicato (1997) it has been argued that the real meaning of the word Hyksos, the fierce warriors that invaded Egypt at the end of the 13th dynasty, is also People of the horses, from HYK = AK and SOS = SUS (hebrew) = HORSE. In the framework of this interpretation we can also propose that the Saka people who invaded Sistan were the same as the Assaka, and even that such a meaning is behind the name Kazakh (an eastern Kazakh tribe is still named Sachs)."

http://itis.volta.alessandria.it/episteme/ep4/ep4sped3.htm

**COMMENT-2: It is obvious that there is no life and force in the arguments of this author, who relates the Mong-2ols with the Sanskrit Ashvakas/Ashvakayanas/Asvayanas, Pali Assaka/Asmaka(?) and the Greek Assakenois/Aspasios. The Ashvakas are known to be living Swat/Kunar valleys since 4th c BC or much earlier. There is no evidence that the Mongols were in Swat/Kunar valleys in the 4th c BC or earlier. Also, the Kambojas are many times considred allied to the Sakas and considred are SCYTHIANS by some scholars which may not be correct. Some sections of the Kambojas esp of the Yognobian Kambojas [or the Parama-Kambojas of Mahabharata [Lohana paramakambojanarishikanutrapani ......MBH 2/27/25], appear to have come under cultural, social and linguistic influences from the Homaverga Sakas and hence could be comnsidered to be 'Scythinesd' or 'Scythians' in loose terminlogy. There was not much cultural/linguistic contacts of Ashvaka Kambojas located in Paropamisadean region with the Sycthian population from north of Pamirs....i.e.Uzbeksthan. Parama-Kambojas lived around head-waters of Zeraphshan river... comprising partly region from Fargana and partly from Sogdiana.


By TRUTHFUL on Wednesday, July 28, 2004 - 9:56 pm:

NAME AFGHAN DERIVED FROM ASHVAKA, ASVAKAN, ASSAKAN, ASSAKENOI,ASHYVAKAYA
[A sub-section of the Kambojas of Kunar/Swat valleys]:

.....FEW MORE REFERENCES FROM LITERATURE

AFGHAN DERAVTION FROM ASSAKAN [i.e. ASVAKAN]:

Dr M. R. Singh writes: 'Dr S. B. Chaudhury has identified the Apaga with Afghan [ ESAI...Ethnic Settlements in Ancient India, p 104] but it is more likely that the name Afghan is contracted from the Assakan and not the Apagas....(M. A. p 158n) "

[The Geographical Data in The Early Puranas, 1972, p 179, Dr M. R. Singh, Jaipur University, Rajasthan]


AFGHAN DERIVATION FROM ASVAKA
SAAN MARTIN [FRENCH SCHOLAR]

"Today Afghanistan has become synonymous with Islam but it is a fact that it has been Islamic only for the last one thousand years. Prior to that for five thousand years it was the cradle of Hindu and Buddhist cultures. In ancient times Afghanistan was politically and culturally an integral part of India. Its ancient name was ‘Upgansthan’."

"In sixth century AD Varahmihir has mentioned the term ‘Avgaan’ in his book ‘Brihatsamhita’. French scholar Saan Martin is of the opinion that the word ‘Afghan’ originates from the Sanskrit word ‘ashvak’ meaning horserider. There are references to Afghanistan in Sanskrit literature as ‘Ashkayan’ meaning the route of horseriders."

http://www.indpride. com/afghanistan.html


AFGHAN DERIVATION FROM ASVAKA [BIBLIOMANIA DICTIONERY HOBSON JOBSON]

"Bellew insists on the distinction between the Afghan and the Pathan (PUTTAN)".

“The Afghan is a Pathan merely because he inhabits a Pathan country, and has to a great extent mixed with its people and adopted their language” (Races of Af., p. 25).

'The name (i.e Afghan) represents Skt. asvaka in the sense of a ‘cavalier,’ and this reappears scarcely modified in the Assakani or Assakeni of the historians of the expedition of Alexander.'

http://www.bibliomania. com/2/3/260/1268/19840/1/frameset.html

AFGHAN FROM ASHVAKA
"As for the word Afghan, it comes from the Sanskrit word Ashvaka where ashva stands for horse. Now ashva of the Sanskrit transforms into aspa in the Persian in which language these people were called Aspagan. One has to be completely one-deaf not to see the transformation of Aspagan to Afghan through usage. From the chronicles of Alexander the Macedonian we hear of two tribes called Assakenoi and Aspasioi that he fought with and defeated in the region of the Katgala Pass between Swat and Dir. Assakenoi is a straightforward Hellenised version of Ashvaka (Assaka in the vernacular, Ashvakayana of Panini's Ashtadhyai..4.1.110) while
Aspasioi [aspa in vernacular, Asvayana of Panini's Ashtadhyai...6.4.174] is what the word Aspzai -- Tribe of the horses became on Macedonian tongues…..Among these people was one tribe -- the Aspzai -- of excellent horsemen who were known for breeding and trading in the finest breed of horses.*** The mind does not have to be taxed hard to see the modern, duly Islamised tribal name of Yusufzai as coming from the ancient Aspasioi or Aspzai."

http://www.jang. com.pk/thenews/feb2003-weekly/nos-16-02-2003/dia.htm

***The land was then known as 'Kamboja' of Sanskrit/Pali literature ....and was called 'Kamboja assanam ayatanam'..in Buddhist text Samangvilasini, [P.T.S. I, p 124]. Please compare 'Assa' (Assaka) of 'Assa-nam' of the Pali with Sanskrit 'Ashva'.


AFGHAN FROM ASHVAKA
"Afghans and the history of theirs is much older than even 1700 years as mentioned by Mr Maiwandi. As during the invasion of Alexender the great in 327 BC when his army was passing through the intricate pass of Khaiber, he was met with strong opposition from the people of Massaga?(one of the forts on a hillock )whome greek historian Arian and Strabulus have pronounciated as "ASSAKANIANS" and sanskrit sources of the time have mentioned the name "ASHVAKAYANS". Well comming back to the opposition by the people of Massaga. It is worth mentioning that Alexender was unable to march further as he failed to subdue Assakanians (ancestors of Afghans) so he did a stratagem by comming to an agreement with the queen of Afghans named Kleophis in greek records (Kripa or Kripi in indian records), as per the agreement Afghans had to leave the place without arms till the army of Alexender could pass safely from the area and later on Afghans can return to their fort, however when unarmed afghans were (numbering 7000) were leaving the place ,the army of Alexender massacered all of them treacherously. so it was 2300 years ago that we get the mention of the word "Assakan" or "Ashvakan" which later on pronunciated as "Afgans"

Sanjeet Srivastava -- Jammu, India

http://www.wordwizard. com/clubhouse/founddiscuss1.asp?Num=2398

ASVAKA/ASMAKA
Sanskrit authors speak of both Asmaká and Asvaká. It is not possible to say whether these represent two distinct tribes or whether they are variant names for the same people. Asanga mentions Asmaka in his Sútrálankára as a territory on the basin of the Indus. This would make it identical with the Assakenus of Greek writers, that is to the east of the Sarasvati, about twenty-five miles from the sea on the Swat valley. Pánini mentions the Asmakas (iv.173)***. The Márkandeya Purána and the Brhat Samhitá place Assaka to the north-west. The Assaka capital, Potana, it has been suggested, is the Paudanya of the Mahábhárata (i.77, 47).

In the Commentary to Kautilya's Arthasásta, Bhattasvámi identifies Asmaka with Mahárástra (Law, op. cit., 22).

http://www.palikanon. com/english/pali_names/ay/assaka.htm
http://www.tribuneindia. com
http://www.tribuneindia. com


*** Panini in his Ashtadhyai mentions Ashvakayana [Ashtadhya Sutra 4.1.110] and Asvayana [Ashtadhyai Sutra 6.4.174] which represent Greek Assakenois and Aspasios respectively. Asmaka [Ashtadhyai IV.173] literally means land of stone. Ashvaka derives from Panini's Ashvakayana.

TRUTHFUL


By TRUTHFUL on Sunday, June 27, 2004 - 6:32 am:

They taught lessons to kings

By Gur Rattan Pal Singh

"CHANDRAGUPTA MAURYA and Alexander the Great had Chanakya and Aristotle, respectively, as their teachers. Evaluation of the influence the teachers exercised over their students, who later on became the most powerful kings in world history, can be quite interesting. Most historians are of the view that Chandragupta Maurya belonged to Bihar, and that he called himself Maurya because his mother was the keeper of royal peacocks (mor) at Pataliputra. He came to Punjab and conquered it. Afterwards, with the help of the Punjab army he seized the Nanda empire. However, there are reasons to believe that Chandragupta belonged to the Kshatriya caste of the ruling Ashvaka tribe of the Koh-i-Mor territory. He called himself Maurya after his homeland. McCrindle, in his book on Alexander’s invasion says: "From the remark of Plutarch that in the early years he had seen Alexander, we may infer that he was a native of the Punjab." Chanakya was born in a Brahmin family at Takshashila (Taxila in Rawalpindi district), the capital of Gandhara, in about 346 B.C. His original name was Vishnugupta, but his parents called him by the pet name of Chanakya. He had studied all the constitutions of numerous states existing at that time in Punjab. After pain-staking work and thought, he wrote Arthashastra which was to serve the purpose of a guide or manual for kings, enabling them to acquire power and preserve it....".

www.tribuneindia. com/1999/99jan10/sunday/head6.htm

About KOH-I-MOR

Could the surname name MORYA be related to the MOR of the KOH-I-MOR? Is it possible? Why not?. Note that this KOH-I-MOR [hill of MOR] is located in the heart of the ancient Kamboja territories as the Ashvakas were the well known Kshatrya Kamboja clans living in Swat/Kunar valleys and they find mention as Assakenois [Assaka in the vernacular, Ashvakayana of Panini's Ashtadhyai..4.1.110] and Aspasios [Asvayana of Panini's Ashtadhyai...6.4.174] in the classical writings. Their land was then known as ASSANAM-AYATNAM....land of horses....the Kamboja of Sanskrit/Pali literature [Kamboja assanam ayatanam.........see Buddhist Jataka Samangvilasini, I, p 124].

"...It is (Kamboja) often mentioned as the famous birthplace of horses (assánam áyatanam) (E.g., DA.i.124; AA.i.399; Vsm.332; also J.iv.464)..".

http://www.palikanon. com/namen/ka/kamboja.htm

Probably Santrakotos and Sisikotuos of the the Greek writings refer to one and the same personage. Another important thing to be noted here is the fact that Ashoka's Shahbazgarhi Rock Edicts no XIII [Yona-Kamboja-Gandharanam.....], no V [Yona-Kambojesu......]are located in the same very region signifying that this land formed the Kamboja population region.

Read also: ".....An interesting feature in Bajour topography is a mountain spur from the Kunar range, which curving eastwards culminates in the well-known peak of Koh-i-Mor, which is visible from the Peshawar valley. It was here, at the foot of the mountain, that Alexander found the ancient city of Nysa and the Nysaean colony, traditionally said to have been founded by Dionysus. The Koh-i-Mor has been identified as the Meros of Arrian's historythe three-peaked mountain from which the god issued. It is also interesting to find that a section of the Kafir community of KAMDESH*** still claim the same Greek origin as did the Nysaeans; still chant hymns to the god who sprang from Gir Nysa (the mountain of Nysa); whilst they maintain that they originally migrated from the Swat country to their present habitat in the lower Bashgol. ..."

http://www.1911encyclopedia.org/B/BA/BAJOUR.htm

*** COMMENT: This land is still inhabited by the Kafir Kambojs ...also known variously as Kam, Kamoze, Kamtoz, Camoze, Caumoje etc. [Please read this thread to refresh your knoledge about Kafir Kambojs of Nuristan]. They are undoubtedly the moderrn descendents of the ancient Kambojas. About their above genelogical claims from the Nysean Greeks, it can be stated that the modern moslem Kams also claim to be related to Qureish tribe of Prophet Mohammad. So one should not take these self claimed genealogical lines of these Kafirs of Kafirstan/Nuristan very seriously. As the investigators like Scott Robertson [The Kafirs of Hindukush] and Alaf Caroe [The Pathans] rightly observe, it has become a fashion with every section of Moslem population to genealogically link itself with the line of the Prophet. So much so, even the Moslem Kambojs [the Zuberi Kambohs] also claim their lineage from Prophet Mohhamad. I will give a website later in support of my above statements.

TRUTHFUL


By TRUTHFUL on Saturday, June 26, 2004 - 9:33 am:

To do a justice to the author, I have made Correction in parenthesised expression as under. Sorry for the inadvertent error.


[Their land was then known as Kamboja of Sanskrit/Pali literature ..Kamboja assanam ayatanam..Samangvilasini, I, p 124].


By TRUTHFUL on Friday, June 25, 2004 - 12:29 pm:

"As for the word Afghan, it comes from the Sanskrit word Ashvaka where ashva stands for horse. Now ashva of the Sanskrit transforms into asp in the Persian in which language these people were called Aspagan. One has to be completely one-deaf not to see the transformation of Aspagan to Afghan through usage. From the chronicles of Alexander the Macedonian we hear of two tribes called Assakenoi and Aspasioi that he fought with and defeated in the region of the Katgala Pass between Swat and Dir. Assakenoi is a straightforward Hellenised version of Ashvaka (Assaka in the vernacular, Ashvakayana of Pani9ni's Ashtadhyai..4.1.110) while Aspasioi [Asvayana of Panini's Ashtadhyai...6.4.174] is what the word Aspzai -- Tribe of the horses became on Macedonian tongues…..Among these people was one tribe -- the Aspzai -- of excellent horsemen who were known for breeding and trading in the finest breed of horses. Their land was then known as Kamboja of Sanskrit/Pali literature [Kamboja assanam ayatanam..Samangvilasini, I, p 124]. The mind does not have to be taxed hard to see the modern, duly Islamised tribal name of Yusufzai as coming from the ancient Aspasioi or Aspzai."


Note: I have added the parenthesised text for better clarity or authenticity.


By LS.THIND on Monday, June 24, 2002 - 3:22 am:

SHAHI DYNASTY OF AFGHANISTAN…TO ALL PROBABILTY WAS A KAMBOJ DYNASTY.
SHAHI IS STILL A WELL-KNOWN KAMBOJ CLAN NAME.

Raja Jaya Pal Shahi, Ruler of Punjab bore the brunt of the Islamic Onslaught

The year 980C.E. marks the beginning of the Muslim invasion into India proper when Sabuktagin attacked Raja Jaya Pal in Afghanistan. Afghanistan is today a Muslim country separated from India by another Muslim country Pakistan. But in 980 C.E. Afghanistan was also a place where the people were Hindus and Buddhists. The name "Afghanistan" comes from "Upa-Gana-stan" which means in Sanskrit "The place inhabited by allied tribes"**. This was the place from where Gandhari of the Mahabharat came from Gandhar whose king was Shakuni. The Pakthoons are descendants of the Paktha tribe mentioned in Vedic literature. Till the year 980 C.E., this area was a Hindu majority area, till Sabuktagin from Ghazni invaded it and displaced the ruling Hindu king - Jaya Pal Shahi.

http://www.hinduweb.org/home/history/sudheerb/landrajnamavali.htm

Afghanistan= from "Upa-gana-stan," Sanskrit for 'land of the Afghans,' that is, 'land of the allied tribes' ….(i.e agglomeration of tribes).

http://www.aboutlatinlanguage.com/article1363.html

**AFGHANISTAN…….OUR EDUCATED COMMENT:
Referring to any Hindi Dictionery e.g. Bhargava’s Standard Dictionary Hindi-English, 5th Revised Enlarged Edition, 2000, p 97

Upa = prefix used in the sense of ….down; near; towards; deputy; under; on; by; with; by means of; in vicinity of c.

Upa also means sub-; a part of .

Gan or Gana = tribe, Jana (Sanskrit term)

Stan=Land, home. (Sanskrit term)

Thus Upa+Ganah=’ Upganah means a sub-tribe’ and not ‘allied tribes’ or ‘agglomeration of tribes’.

Thus, by this above analysis,
Upa+gana+stana means

.LAND OF THE “SUB-DIVISION” OF THE GANA or
.LAND OF THE SUB-DIVISION OF THE JANA or
.LAND OF SUB-TRIBE or,
.LAND OF SUB-GANAH or,
.LAND OF A SECTION OF ONE TRIBE…does not make sense at all.

Thus the meaning as defined above in these websites is totally wrong and misleading. It does not convey the meaning of LAND OF THE ALLIED TRIBES or AGGLOMERATION OF TRIBES as the writer claims but it amounts to saying that Afghanistan was so called because it was land of a sub-tribe. That is riduculous/senseless.

Some times, some writers try to force fit their own subjective opinions or otherwise try to find a solution to an unresolved issue by inventing their own expedient theories, which rather than solving the riddle further complicate the issue. This is absolutely not the way the name ‘AFGHANISTAN’ had got invented.

Please see our earlier discussion concerning how the modern name Afghan had, to all probabilty, evolved from THE NAME OF ANCIENT 'ASHVAKAYAN' (PANINI) OR ASHVAKAN (MCCRINDLE) KAMBOJAS OF SWAT/KUNAR VALLEYS.


AND WHO COULD BE THE SHAHI DYNASTY OF AFGHANISTAN?

SHAHI: the SHAHI dynasty of Afghanistan may indeed have some thing to do with the Kambojs. As stated above, the modern Kambojs still have a SHAHI clan name among their list of clans. The seat of action is also East Afghanistan which is undoubtedly regarded as the land of the Kambojs. We will submit our opinions on this issue later some times.

See below:
Form 6th century BC to 6th Century AD. The history of the Hindu Shahis can be traced back to the Turk Shahis of Kabal. The former was founded by Kallar*, an usurper of the throne of Lankaturman, the last ruler of the Turks Shahi dynasty of Afghanistan, in AD 843.

He shifted his capital to Hund on (North West Frontier Province…Al Biruni’s Wahind) the right Bank of the Indus, in the Peshawar Valley in due course of time the Hindu-Shahi rulers realized them suzerainty in other part of the Indus region. However the (world Famous) salt range in believed to the their stronghold as the frequency of the Hindu temples.

http://www.geocities.com/khizarhayats/Pakarch.htm


Please also refer to History Culture of Indian People, Imperial Kanauj Vol IV, p 112, Struggle for Empire, p 26, Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar

COMMENT: The seat of Hindu dynasty is east Afghanistan here. This East Afghanistan factor blended with the fact that the kings have been called ‘SHAHI’(SHAHI is a Kamboja clan names till date) are powerful indicators that the Shahi dynasty of the Afghanistan of 9th c AD could indeed have been a Kamboja dynasty.


By THIND on Friday, June 14, 2002 - 5:44 pm:

Sri Roy could have easily extended the logic and concluded that
Afghanistan was another fixed deposit created by the Muslims quite
some time before Pakistan and Bangaladesh came into existence. But Sri
Roy is not the only Hindu to have missed that point. Hindu society as
a whole has ceased to remember that Afghanistan rose on the ruins of
Gandhara and Kamboja, the two ancient JANAPADAS of Bharatavarsha which
had stood guard at our North-Western gateway for ages untold.
http://groups.google.com/groups?q=kamboja+afghanistanhl=enlr=selm=Pine.A32.3.91.950327120907.22957A-100000%40stallion.jsums.edurnum=7


By THIND on Monday, March 25, 2002 - 8:46 am:

Professor Abaya Aryasinghe is a Sri Lankan intellectual, historian and educationist.

According many Sri Lankan intellectuals including Prof A. Aryasinghe, the 'Khmers/Cambodians' of Indo-China and the 'Kambojas' of Ashoka's Inscriptions (Noerth-west India) were of same people....


By Mlechcha Kamboj on Sunday, March 24, 2002 - 2:09 pm:

I have found that the guy K Singh who has called for a jehad against the Afghan Kambojas/Yavanas Malechchas is the one who mostly writes under KUNAL SINGH, on soc.culture.indian, soc.culture.pakistan web pages.


By H. Chandi on Saturday, March 23, 2002 - 3:10 pm:

Gandhara art and Asoka inscriptions in Afghanistan

by Professor Abaya Aryasinghe

In the Edicts of Asoka (No. 5V and VIII) reference to the Yavanas and Kambojas is made. The latter peoples occupied an immediate position between the Yavanas and Gandharians. The Gandharians have the reputation of originating a remarkable style of art and sculpture which influenced the neighbouring lands including Bamiyan.

The militant Taleban or any other Muslim organisation cannot claim this territory of the Yavanas, Cambodians (=Kambojas here ) and the Gandharians who built an excellent Buddhist civilisation for centuries. The Muslims, in a sense, are intruders in the land governed by Chandragupta and Asoka. It is time that all Buddhists in the world should issue an ultimatum asking these militants to leave the land of the Buddhists.

http://www.lanka.net/lakehouse/2001/04/15/fea13.html


By Harjit. Chandi on Thursday, March 21, 2002 - 2:50 pm:

`Afghan (KAMBOJA) region was scene of Mahabharata battle' ?????????????????????????????????

Dr. Sidharth said several literary references supported these conclusions. The Vishnu Purana clearly mentions that 1,015 years elapsed between the birth of Parikshit, the son of Pandavas and the coronation of Nanda who lived around 300 BC. References in the Mahabharata and Vishnu Purana and other texts mentions places around latitude of 35 degrees and to people living there, for example, Gandahar (present day Kandahar) and Kamboja (in Afghanistan), Kashmir and China. The peoples referred to include the Gandharas, the Sakas (from Sakadweepa near Afghanistan), Yavanas (Westerners), Tusharas (Tohara, Tukhara, the Tukharians of Chinese; Turkistan) and Pahlavas of Iran.

http://www.hinduonnet.com/thehindu/2002/01/13/stories/2002011301180600.htm


By A MLECCHA KAMBOJ on Sunday, February 10, 2002 - 1:18 am:

Let's sincerely sympathise with this madhyadesha aryan ksingh. After all, the 'conquored people' have the right to swear at their 'conqurors'...and so this singh fellah really does.

Ancient Indian history is a strong witness to the fact that the 'ancestors' of these helpless madhyadeshis like mr ksingh have also been using similar abusive language towards their 'less conservative' but 'more enterprising' counter-parts from north-west frontiers. Being helpless against the 'guts' of those so-called 'frontier mlechchas', these masochists simply submitted and started calling them names like barbaric invaders, mlecchas, sudras or degraded races. This is not at all surprising. What is surprising however is that over the millenia these madhyadeshis have not yet forgotten their old scars and till date, continue to nurture a deep-rooted haterd malice towards their ancient tormentors...whom they still would abusively like to call 'mlecchas'. Probably this is the only 'mental consolation' these madhyadeshi descendents of the ancient aryan loosers can derive from their history of repeated losses of long ago at the hands of their fronteir aryan brethern.


By H. S. Chandi on Friday, February 08, 2002 - 11:54 am:

A MADHYADESHA ARYAN LASHES OUT AT THE KAMBOJAS!!

Mr. KSINGH GIVES A CLARION CALL TO 'INDIAN AGRARIAN ARYANS' TO FORM A FRONT AGAINST THE KAMBOJA/YAVANA MLECHHAS OF AFGHANISTAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

http://groups.google.com/groups?selm=3Bgx7.24373%24ev2.32941%40www.newsranger.com

Dear Mr KSINGH, do you also want the INDIAN KAMBOJAS be treated in the same fashion as the Afghans ....the modern descendents of ANCIENT KAMBOJA/YAVANA MLECHCHAS OF AFGHANISTAN?


Be informed that 'some fraction' of the SO-CALLED ANCIENT AFGHAN KAMBOJA MLECHCHAS......... themselves form now a "very important segment" of your Indo-Agrarian Society i.e. the Indian Kambojas!

Do you or don't you intend to include the Punjab/Haryana/Rajasthan Kambojas into your proposed "UNION OF INDIAN ARYAN AGRARIANS"?

Remember KSINGH!, without the "Kamboja Agrarians of India"..., our 'Dear India' is sure to go relapse back to old days of chronic 'FOOD SHORTAGE' and inevitably would go 'begging' to same USA in order to feed its 'numerous hungary soules'.

Do you want it happen?
Just a thought?

Sincerely and with regards

Harjit Singh Chandi


By LS.THIND on Friday, November 30, 2001 - 11:02 am:

REFERE TO OUR POSTING:
Sunday, November 25, 2001 - 03:26 pm:

INCORRECT TEXT:[Excerpts From: THE KAFIRS OF HINDUKUSH,PAGES 75]

************************************************


NOW REFER TO PAGES 75-76.
“A convenient classification is to divide all Kafirs into:
(1)Siaposh Kafirs
(2)Waigilis Kafirs
(3)Presungulis (Viron) Kafirs. Another important tribe is called Ashkun Kafirs of whom it was very difficult to get information…..” (the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan).

“The ‘SIAPOSH KAFIRS’ classification contains the following: (1)KATIR KAFIRS, (2)the KAM KAFIRS.

The KATIR KAFIRS of ‘SIAPOSH” grouping comprise the Katir, Kti or Katawar, Kulam and the Ramguli Kafirs. [(ref to page 76 from (a) to (d)]

“Of the other tribes included under the designation ‘SIAPOSH’, the chief is the ‘KAM’ or ‘Kamtoz’. This people inhabits the Bashgul and its lateral valleys from confines of Madugal country to the Kunar valley. It has seven villages and various small settlements or hamlets……” (op cit p 75-77).

*************************************************


CORRECT TEXT [Excerpts From: THE KAFIRS OF HINDUKUSH,PAGES 75-77]

NOW REFER TO PAGES 75-77.

“A convenient classification is to divide all Kafirs into:

(1)Siaposh Kafirs

(2)Waigilis Kafirs. Aso includes Ashun Kafirs of whom it was very difficult to get information.

(3)Presungulis (Viron) Kafirs. (the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan).

"The ‘SIAPOSH KAFIRS’ classification contains the following:

(A)KATIR KAFIRS,
(B)the KAM KAFIRS.

(A)KATIR KAFIRS: of ‘SIAPOSH' grouping further comprise:

(1)Katir (also called Kamoz: see para 3, p 76, Ibid)
(2)Kti or Katawar,
(3)Kulam and
(4)the Ramguli Kafirs."
[(ref to page 76 from (a) to (d), Ibid]

(B): “Of the last tribe included under the designation ‘SIAPOSH’, the chief is the ‘KAM’ or ‘Kamtoz’. This people inhabits the Bashgul and its lateral valleys from confines of Madugal country to the Kunar valley. It has seven villages and various small settlements or hamlets……” (op cit p 76-77).

NOTE THAT ON ABOVE PAGE OF HIS TEXT [THE KAFIRS OF HINDUKUSH, P 76], SIR GEROGE SCOT ROBERTSON NOW USES THE NAME ’KAMTOZ‘ FOR THE ‘KAM KAFIRS’ OF KAMDESH (see last para, p 76, Ibid) AND THE NAME ‘KAMOZ’ FOR THE ‘KATIR KAFIRS’ (see para 3, p 76, Ibid) OF UPPER BASHGUL VALLEY... WHERE AS ON PAGE 71, HE USES KAMOZ FOR KAM KAFIRS AND KAMTOZ FOR KATOR KAFIRS.(see last para, page 71, Ibid)

The inadvertent error is sincerely regretted.


By LS.THIND on Monday, November 26, 2001 - 12:56 am:

As some of our readers might have noted, we have used name Kamtoz and Kamoz interchangeably for Katirs and the Kam tribes of Nuristan. This is based on the text of Sir George Scott Robertson (The Kafirs of Hindukush).

[Actually George Scott has also some ‘confusion’ and himself admits that his nomenclature may be some what different from some other investigators who have preeceded him or who would follow him].

PRE 1896 PRE-ISLAMIC ERA OF KAFIRSTAN:

(1)REFER TO “THE KAFIRS OF HINDUKUSH” Ed 1896, BY SCOTT ROBERTSON:

ON PAGE 71
“…….Thus the upper part of Bashgul valley is called Katirgul (Lutdeh in Chitrali, or Kamtoz in Pushtu), the middle portion Muman (Madugal in Chitrali), and the lower part Kam (Kamdesh in Chitrali, or Kamoz in Pushtu):

Note that in the text, Sir G. Scott writes that the land of the ‘Katir’ Kafirs of upper Bashgul valley is called Kamtoz, while that of Kam Kafirs living in lower Bashagul valley is called Kamoz.

NOW REFER TO PAGES 75.
“A convenient classification is to divide all Kafirs into:
(1)Siaposh Kafirs
(2)Waigilis Kafirs
(3)Presungulis (Viron) Kafirs. Another important tribe is called Ashkun Kafirs of whom it was very difficult to get information…..” (the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan).

“The ‘SIAPOSH KAFIRS’ classification contains the following: (1)KATIR KAFIRS, (2)the KAM KAFIRS.

The KATIR KAFIRS of ‘SIAPOSH” grouping comprise the Katir, Kti or Katawar, Kulam and the Ramguli Kafirs. [(ref to page 76 from (a) to (d)]

“Of the other tribes included under the designation ‘SIAPOSH’, the chief is the ‘KAM’ or ‘Kamtoz’. This people inhabits the Bashgul and its lateral valleys from confines of Madugal country to the Kunar valley. It has seven villages and various small settlements or hamlets……” (op cit p 76-77).

SEE THAT IN THE ABOVE PARA, SIR GEROGE SCOT ROBERTSON NOW USES NAME ’KAMTOZ‘ FOR THE ‘KAM KAFIRS’ OF KAMDESH AND HAS USED ‘KAMOZ’ FOR THE ‘KATIR KAFIRS’ OF UPPER BASHGUL VALLEY.

THUS Sir George Scott Robertson himself has ‘unnecessarily’ confused himself in drawing a fine line in nomenclaturing the ‘Siaposh Kafirs’.

The other researchers/investigators like M Elphinstone, who visited Kafirstan in pre-Islamic times have not differentiated Katirs and the Kams (of Siaposh group) into Kamoze and Kamtoz names but have rather called them as Caumoze, Camoze, Caumoje, Camojee etc. ( An Account of the Kingdom of Cabol, 1972, Oxford University, Press London, N.Y. Vol II, p 376-377 by M. Elphinstone).

In fact, according to all other investigators, Kamtoz and Kamoz (Camoze, Caumoze), Kamoje (Camoje, Caumoje), Kamojee (Caumojee/Camojee) etc are the various ways of pronouncing their name in Pushtu, Chitrali or in Kafir languages. And they all remind us of the ancient name, the ‘Kamboja’ of Ashoka’s R.E’s Sanskrit/Pali texts..

In fact, the several investigators have now established that the Katirs/Kators , the Ktis or Katawar and the Kam Kafirs…all belong to the so-called SIAPOSH grouping and they are all related ETHNICALLY. The Kams and the Katas also SPEAK SAME LANGUAGE or ITS DIALECTICAL VARIATIONS (Sir G. Scott Robertson)

Cf: “….. the Jasi/Jaisi and all the people of Nuristan who have emanated from ‘Ktivi region’, including the ‘Kata’ (Katirs) from Ktivi proper, the ‘Ksto’ from Kstu, the ‘Mumo’ from the Mum, the ‘Binio’ from Buni, and the ‘Kom’ from the Kam-tol speak one language, albeit with dialectical divisions. These divisions were furthered as the people emigrated out of their upper Pech* homeland.” (Richard F. Strands. Richard has recently spent over 25 years in investigating the Nuristanis/their culture, language etc).

* PECH=KAMAH river valley ( Sir Scott Robertson, see The Kafirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 81)

Dr Loh and numerous others investigators have designated the ‘Siaposh tribe’ of Hindukush as the modern descendents of ancient Kambojas.

[Writes Dr Nand Lal Dey” “According to Dr Loh, the Shiaposh tribes living in the Hindukush mountains are the descendents of the Kamboja people. (The Geographical Dictionery of Ancient and Medieval India p 87, by Dr. Nundo Lal Dey)]

M Elphinstone in fact was the first investigator who had identified these Camoze/Camoje etc Caufir tribes with the ancient Kambojas. (op. cit. f.n., p 619)

“Katirs inhabit various valleys, as Siaposh communities, entirely independent of one another; yet they still acknowledge a common origin and a relationship to each others” op cit p 77, first para).

Sir George Scott also admits in his book that there is a possibility that other investigators might have used different nomenclature for the Kafirs and future investigators may use still different. “Nomenclature you get for these tribes depends” , he says, “ from which direction you enters to investigate the people of Kafirstan”. (op cit).


By LS.THIND on Saturday, November 24, 2001 - 11:59 am:

PART V

The Katawer Kafirs mentioned by Sharifudin (Temur's historian) were the ancestors of the modern Katirs, who are a numerous branch of the Shiaposh Kafirs currently living north-east of Alishang. This shows that the Katawers and Shiaposh Kafirs were more wide spread and living more openly during the times of Mongolian king Timur. Over the time, their area has shrunk, which means that the Kafirs living towards farther areas of Panjshir have in the meantime become Mohhamadan converts. All Kafirs except the Presun, Madugal, Kashtan and Istrat/Gourdesh tribes are described by several investigators as belonging to Indo Aryan class, having sharp features, brownish and bluish eyes, slender, straight or some times aquiline noses, dark or brownish or many times blond hair, fair colors and well built and tall statures. The Wai and Ashkun Kafirs who seem related to each other have been decribed by some scholars as possibly having Greek blood or are described as the descendents of Greek soldier colonies of the post- Alexandra era. G. Robert Scott describe the Wais/Ashkuns as being under the Greek influence of yore. The Presun Kafirs have been described as the aboriginal inhabitants of Kafirstan, with Dravidian features and blood, who seem to have successfully resisted the onslaughts of the retreating Kafir tribes and with whom these Presun Kafirs seem to have settled on equal terms.

Several investigators and scholars have established that Kams and Katirs tribes are descendents of ancient Kambojas. To gather, they number about 50000 out of over 100,000 population of Nuristan. These two tribes form most militant and dominant tribes of Nuristan. The Kam tribe which is the most united tribe of Nuristan also is the most dominating of all Nuristani tribes. The Kams and the Katir tribes, to all probability, are the descendents of the Kapisha KAMBOJAS WHO HAD CROSSED HUNDUKUSH from Badakshan and spread into the Paropamisadean region in the pre-Buddhist days. Kam’s current headquareter is Kamdesh in Bashgul valley in Nuristan.

Probably, the Wais are also from the ancient Kambojas of Kandhar, who are said to have been Yavana’s neighbors (Shar-I-Kuna Inscriptions of king Ashoka). They were probably the Repulican Kambojas who had earlier moved to Kandhar in later epic times and had set up their independent Repulic in Archosia. During Alexandra times, a part of their territory was taken and colonized by Yavanas (Archosia). It has been suggested by scholars that the south side of Archosia may have been controlled by Yavanas while the north side probably remained in possession of the Kambojas during and after the Maurya kings. Ashoka’s Shar-I-kuna Inscription of Kandhar was located at the coterminous (common) boundary of Kamboja and Yavana settlements in Archosia [The Problems of Ancient India, 2000, K. D. Sethna, p 3-4, The Location of Kamboja, Purana Vol IV, No 1, Jan 1964, K. D. Sethna). Wais Kafirs seem to be the descendents of these Archotian Kambojas who had been in intimate cultural contact with Yavanas for long long time. During Moslem onslaughts, some of these Kamboja clans had receded back to their blood kithmen (Kapisha Kambojas) living in Paropamisadean region since ancient times. The retreating tribe was the so-called Wais Kafirs of Scott Robertson. The Katirs and the Kams tribes, their blood Kithmen, to all probability, had been living in Paropamisafea region since earliest time.

The Kashtan and Istrat Kafirs are described as the slave progeny of the tribal people who were overpowered and enslaved by the Kams, Katirs tribes who had receded from frontlines of Parpamisadean territoty into the interior mountainous defiles and occupied the present valleys in the 10/11th century.

*******END********


SORDID DRAMA IN REAL LIFE PLAYED ON THE INDIAN SOIL:
A MATTER OF SHAME FOR ALL WE INDIANS:.

LESSONS:
DIVIDED WE FELL IN OLDEN TIMES, LET US BE UNITED SO THAT WE MAY NOT GO THRU SIMILAR DISGRACE AGAIN.

FROM HISTORY PERSPECTIVE:

Invasion of Timur the KAMBOJA tribes of Kapistan (Modern Nuristan…Afganistan) as also other tribes of northern India: [Based on Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, 398-477)

“…..Before Timur launched his Indian expedtion, information reached him that his grandson Pir Muhammad, the governor of Kabul, Qandhar, Gazni and other neighboring regions had already sent an expeditions against India, which crossed the river Sindhu, captured Uch and besieged Multan. Timur, on his part, started from Samarqand early in A.D. 1398 (March or April). When he reached Afghanistan, a large number of Muslims, both high and low, complained to him of the ill-treatment which they constantly received at the hands of the infidel of Kator and Siyaposh and asked for his protection which was readily granted” [ref: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117 Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].


COMPLAINT FILED BY THE BELIEVER MUSLIMS AGAINST THE KAFFIRS/NON-BELIEVERS:
“The infidel Kators and the Siyaposhes exact tribute and blackmail every year from us who are true believers, and if we fail in the least of our settled amount, they slay our men and carry our women and children into slavery” (ref: Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 400 ).


SOME COMMENT BY THE AUTHORS OF THE BOOK: “It appears that the Muslims complaints practically amounted to the system of distraint for realizing the arrears in rent or tribute (settled amount). The degree of severity was naturally exaggerated by them, particularly as it was imposed by the infidels on the true belivers. This aspect the case clearly emerges both from the address of the Muslims and the reply of Timur: “On hearing these words. The flame of my zeal for Islam, and my affection for my religion, began to blaze “[ref: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 123, Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].
(Based on: Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 400 ).


“Timur himself proceded against Kator, which denoted the region between Kashmir and Kabol. And sent a detachment against the Siyaposhes. The fort of the Kator, deserted by the people, was leveled with the ground and houses of the city were burnt down. The infidels who took refuge on top of the hill were defeated and many of them put to death. Some of the infidels held out for three days and Timur offered them the usual alternative of death or Islam. They chose the latter, but soon recanted and attacked a regiment of Muslim soldiers during night. But the latter were on their guard and killed a number of infidels and took 150 of them as prisoners “who were afterwards put to death by enraged soldiery”. As soon as it was day, Timur ordered his troops to advance on all four sides, “to kill all the men, to make prisoners the women and the children and to plunder and lay waste all their property”. When the order was faithfully executed, he “directed towers to be built on the mountains of the skulls of those obstinate unbelievers”. In order to let posterity know of this expedition, “in the auspicious month of Ramazan, A.H. 800” (A.D. 1398), Timur engraved an account of it on a neighbouring hill and then proceeded to retrieve the disaster that had befallen the other part of the army which had been sent against the Siyaposhes”.
(Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 401-408 ).

[above text is taken from: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117 Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].

“Burban Aglan, who was sent against the Siyaposhes with 10000 men, “was routed by , and fled from a small number of infidels” . A small detachment of 400 men under Muhammad Azad, sent to his help, was attacked by the infidels, but he fought gallantly and after having recovered the horses and the armor lost by Aglan, returned home-wards. Timur then advanced in person and captured some places but, as nothing more is said, presumably, after this, the Siyaposhes were left alone”.
(Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 401-408 ).

“Timur then exterminated the rebellious predatory tribes of Aghanis and crossed the Sindhu river in September, 1398. He marched along the Jhelum and defeated several local chiefs, crossed this river below its junction with Chenab and reached Tulamba, which submitted without any fight. Here news reached him that Pir Muhammad had captured Multan. The two armies then joined, and after sending a part of his forces by way of Dipalpore and Samana, Timur himself proceeded to Bhatnir, a strong fortified place occupied by Dul Chand, a Hindu chief “famous thorought the whole country”. [ref: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117) Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].


“The causus belli was furnished by conduct of chiefs and nobles of the city of Dipalpore who had tendered allegiance to Pir Mohammad but later turned rebels and killed Musafir Kaboli, the governor appointed by Timur. On hearing the approach of Timur, the rebels took refuge in Bhatnir fort. The fort was fortified by a body of Rajputs who offered a stout resistance but Dul Chand ultimately surrendered and presented him to Timur. Timur then punished various refractory chiefs, especially the 500 from Dipal Pore and their wives and children were made slaves…”. [Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, pp 420-427].


“Timur then captured the city of Sarsuti and the fearful scene was repeated. “All these infidel Hindus were slain, their wives and children were made prisoners, and their property and goods became the spoil of the victors”. Several thousand women and children who were brought captive became Mohammadans. [Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, pp 427-428].


“Then the Timur proceeded against the Jats. Although they fled to the jungles, Timur pursued them there. He killed 2000 Jats, captured their wives and children and plundered their cattle and propert” [Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 429].


“About this time another part of Timur’s army which was following a more northerly route joined him near Samana, and Timur marched via Panipat towards Delhi. After reaching neighborhood of Delhi, he sent a force of cavalary in advance to Delhi and had ordered it to plunder and destroy every village, and to kill every one whom they met. The cavalary faithfully obeyed the orders, plundered every village, killed the men, carried away a number of Hindu Prisonoers, both male and female…” ([Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 432].

“Next day Timur crossed Yamuna, and captured Loni on other bank of river. People here were mostly Hindus. Many of the Rajputs placed their wives and children in their houses and burnt them and then they rushed to the battle and were killed. After this fort was was captured, Timur gave orders that Musulman prisoners should be separated and saved. But the infidels should all be dispatched to hell with the proselytizing sword……”. ([Tuzak-I-Timuri, Translated in HIED, III, p 433].

[Source: History and Culture of Indian People, The Delhi Sultanate, p 117-121, 123, Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr Munshi].

THE ABOVE EXCERPTS ARE TAKEN FROM HISTORY AND CULTURE OF INDIAN PEOPLE, THE DELHI SULTANATE, VOL IV, p 116, 117-121, 123. WHICH PLEASE REFER IF INTERESTED.

TIMUR AND THE SIAPOSH KAMBOJ KAFIRS: Dr THOMAS HOLDICH, D.Sc,
“Emperor Timur also had to fight with Shiaposh and Katawer Kafirs (1399 AD) living within the Doab of Panjshir and Alishang rivers towards the northern area. A section of the Katawer Shiaposh Kafirs (Kambojas) gave Mongole raider Timur a very obstinate fighting, but were eventually defeated by his numerous and superior forces….. “ (The Gates of India 1910, p 94-134 political map facing page 94, by Dr Thomas Holdich, D.Sc).
“The story as told by Timur’s Historian, Sharifudin, says that in A.D 1399, when Timur was at Andarab, complaints were made to him of outrage and oppression by the exaction of tribute, or ‘Karaj’ against idolators of Katawar and the Shiaposh. It appears that Katawar was then the general name for the northern regions of Kafirstan, although, no reference to that name had been recorded lately….” (op cit. p 355).
“Timur is said to have taken a third part of the army of Andarab against the infidels, and to have reached Perjan (probably Parwan) from whence he detached a paert of his force to the north of that place, whilst he himself proceeded to Kawak, which is certainly the Khawak at the head of the Panjir valley. …From Khawak he ‘made the ascent’ of the mountains of the ‘Ketnev’ (i.e. he crossed the intervening snow-covered divide between the Panjshir and the head of Alishang) and descended on the fortress of Najil. This was abandoned by the Siaposh Kafirs, who held a high hill on left bank of the river. After the obstinate fight, the hill was finally carried and the male infidels “whose souls were blacker than their garments” were killed and their women and children were made prisoners. Timur set up a pillar with an inscription recording the event ………….” (ref: The Gates of India 1910, p 355-356 and political map facing page 94, by Dr Thomas Holdich, D.Sc).

.............................


By LS.THIND on Saturday, November 24, 2001 - 8:18 am:

MINOR CORRECTION”

INCORRECT”
“Thus most possibly, the three major tribes of the Kafirs (Katirs, Kams, Wais) have all probably retreated from Kandhar. Some of them were under Greek cultural influence for obvious reasons…being their long time neighbors in Kandhar, they had imbibed certain Grecian manners, customs and some linguistic influences from their neighbors”

CORRECT:
“Thus most possibly, out of these three major tribes of the Kafirs (Katirs, Kams, Wais) the Wai tribe probably retreated from Kandhar. They were under Greek cultural influence for obvious reasons…being a long time neighbors of Yavanas in Kandhar. They had imbibed certain Grecian manners, customs and some linguistic influences from their long time friends and neighbors.”

The inadvertent error is regretted.

PART IV
SOME COMMENTS/OBSERVATIONS OF SIR GEORGE SCOTT ROBERTSON ABOUT THE KAFIRS OF HINDUKUSH, ESPECIALLY WITH REFERENCE TO KAM, (KAMOZ), KATIR (KAMTOZ) AND WAI KAFIR TRIBES OF KAFIRSTAN:

“The Kam Kafirs are the most famous tribe of Kafirstan………..The Kams and the Wais tribes are the fircest and most intractable of all the Kafir tribes while of those two, the Kams (Kamoz) are the most to be dreaded for their military prowess……… Admirers of form would delight in Kafirs in their own country. They give such an impression of gracefulness and strength when once the eye has become used to the vile robes they wear…As might be expected of a wild, excitable people, their gestures are highly dramatic….their pluck is immense…Their countenances are of distinct Aryan type, the nose, as a rule, being particularly well-shaped. The Kam and wais contain the handsomest people I have seen, especially the Wais. ……In the highest form, the men have well-shaped heads, good features and quite steady eyes….The cast of feature is grave, one might almost say intellectual….One of the greatest surprises in store for a traveller who has only seen Kafirs out of their own country is observe their wonderful sense of personal dignity…their solemn manner and proude bearing are remarkable. …they are merry and selfrespecting… A Kafir, wild and independent as he appears at first sight, has a strange reluctance to act on his own responsibility on any important doubteful question. He loves to go off with his fellows and noisily discuss what should be done. …The Kafirs are extremely social….With a single Kafir it is easy to do as you please, provided you do not transgress his unwritten code of manners or run athwart his national customs….A kafir in his own way is a model of politeness…Among the Kafirs, the expenditure on food supplies in entertaining guests must be great…..Kafirs, both by nature and necessity, are most hospitable… Kafirs are very quarrelsome among themselves. It is absolutely important for a man to take a quarrel up on the instant to assert his manhood.. I have never seen any gathering of Kam or Katir men without no seeing one or two rows…. Hardly a day passes witjout a disturbance somewhere, due to this cause….But if a quarreling is manly thing, peacemaking is sacred virtue among the Kafirs. Men, boys and even dogs are separated at the first indication of a probable fight. ….The Kafirs are extremely quick in their movements that an instantaneous quarrel is followed by a lightning-like onslaught, and so one or the other of the combatants often gets more or less hurt, but there is never time for a second blow. The fighters are at once seized, hurled aside and separated or thrown down and literally set upon the by standers. Any one who would not lend a hand in stopping a village fight will be looked upon and would consider himself a mean and unworthy..……It is as natural for a Kafir to thieve as it is for him to eat. The children are encouraged to steal….The villagers think it only natural to thieve……..The Kafirs are never rough and cruel to animals….There is nothing like religious tolerance among the Kafirs….The Kafir always cling to his blood…Kafirs are extremely avengeful people. Even if a Kafir slave-boy sold out of his tribe by the members were executed, say for murder, in Chitral, he would be avenged by his tribe.…. Their inter-tribal hatred is so immense that it often entirely deadens their political foresight… ….Although a Kafir thinks it is virtue and in accordance with religion to kill Musalmans and give himself the benefit of any doubt about their enemies; although in his raids into hostile territories whether Kafir or Musleman, he spares neith men nor women, although he holds human life as of very little account., and although, in hunting, he may appear to brutal methods of getting the game, he is not a cruel man by nature. ….Family affections in Kafirstan are very strong. Some tribes are in the habit of selling little girls, and money will tempt some men even to sell children who are nearly related to them, but as a general rule, it is the offering of slaves that they dispose of most readily… To any one who considers how wild he is, his comparative freedom from brutality is astonishing…Kafirs are wonderfully brave…In view of the inferior nature of their weapons, they achieve wonders…the chief reason the Kafirs have been able to maintain their independence is the gallantry, reckless bravery and devotion with which they defend themselves…Kafirs are splendidly loyal to one another (friends of friends) and are accustomed to acts of self-sacrifice…a Kafir will never desert his friends in lurch even at the price of their own life…In the Kafir opinion, a really fine character, what he emphatically calls a” good man” must possess the following attributes: He must be successful homicide, a good hillman, ever-ready to quarrel, and of an amorous disposition, a good dancer, a good shot, a good stone-quoit player and rich….Kafirs can be easily bribed, and will do almost any thing for money, but their natural natural boastfulness compels them them to publish the fact that they have have been clever enough to wrest money from stranger..when the cupidity of their friends and relations is at once inflamed, reason is thrown into the winds, and the gravest difficulties then arise….It is probable that there is no single tribe of Kafirs at the present day which is at peace with all other tribes. Some of their wars, if the wars they can be called, have continued for generations…For instance, that between the Kams and the most western Katirs, the Ramgulis (Kamoz) is said to have lasted over hundred years….A man of any position who has been killed must be atoned for by blood…. For one’s honor and that of one’s family, come what may, one must kill the murderer in front of the dead man’s coffin… in that case, the Kafirs can not ever ever be bribed for whatever money….. Kafirs are theoretically all equal……..(2, 3, 166, 167,168, 181, 184, 185,188,169,190, 191, 194, 197, 432, 433, 560, 562, 563, op cit).

As said above, "A man of any position who has been killed must be atoned for by blood ........For one’s honor and that of one’s family, come what may, one must kill the murderer in front of the dead man’s coffin… in that case, the Kafirs can not ever ever be bribed for whatever money….."

AN INTERESTING EPISODE DESCRIBED BY GEORGE SCOTT ROBERTSON CONCERNING A KAM KAFIR:

“...A man of any position who has been killed must be avenged and atoned for by blood. In 1891 Kam Kafirs were hunting some Janul Mosalmans down the Kunar Valley. Jandulis ran for shelter to Mehtar’s (Tribal Chief’s) new fort at Nursut, which was garrisoned by Chitrali soldiers. The fort door was banged to just as the last Musalman closely followed by leading Kam Kafir, passed through. It was a near shave, and the Chitrali at the gate had to fire, killing the Kafir, to keep him entering the gate.”

“Time passed until in 1893, I found myself at Chitral an a special mission from Government of India to the Mehar Nizam-ul-Mulk. One day a messanger came to me from a well known Kam Kafir named Shyok, who sent word that, as an old friend of mine, he was anxious not to cause trouble of any kind in the then critical state of affairs at Chitral, but that the man who had been killed at Nari fort was a member of his (Shyok) family and although the slain was an individual of no tribal importance, yet Shyok must a Chitrali ti kill. In the circumstances, to prevent complications and particularily out of friendship with me, Shyok was prepared to accept any Chitrali..a slave even, but a Chitrali of some kind or other he must have. As I knew Shyok to be remarkable for cupidity (greed) even among the Kafirs, it seemed as if there should be little difficulty in settluing the matters by paying him ransom for the slain person; but broaching the subject to my Kafir son Shermalik, who had been sent to see me as Shyok’s ambassador, he remarked: “You know Shyok well. There is nobody in Kafirstan so greedy and avaricious as he is, yet if you offer him a Lakh of rupees (wow a Lakh in 1896!!!!), he can not accept it. For his honor’s sake, he must have a Chitrali to kill in front of the dead man’s coffin in Kafirstan. All my arguments and persuasions failed. Shermalik said that the Mehar (Chief of Chitral) would understand the situation and would readily supply a victim if advised to do so…How the affair was settled I do not know. Probably Shyok or some of his friends caught some unfortunate Chitrali and killed him and Mehar winked at the deed, if he heard of it at all….......” (Kafirs of Hindukush, 1896, pp 562-562, Scott Robertson).

DEPLORABLE:
“All the neighboring Musalman tribes have intense hatred of Kafirs, with the exception, perhaps of the Kunar valley Gabar villagers and Minjanis. This does not arise, I am convinced, from religious prejudices…as much as from the injuries the Musalmans have had from the Kafirs through the long ages. Similarily, the Kafirs love to dance to Gish (their god of war) after killing Musalmans, but their hatred of Afghans is far more than religious fanaticism. Even in times of remote past, it has kept the two people at bitter feud. Both Kafirs and Afghans are brigands by instinct, and both are careless of human life. Perhaps Kafirs are the worst of the two in both respects, but the Afghan makes the account more than even by his added perfidy and cunning.” (op cit p 567-568).

WAR STRATEGY OF KAMS:
“When attacked by foreigners, who are always armed with much better fire-arms and other weapons than the Kafirs possess, the latter usually adopt purely a defensive tactics. They hold positions, from little ambuscades, and so forth but are always prepared to fall back before the superior strenghth of the enemy. They seek to cut off stragglers and harass the invaders in every possible way. Then, when the enemy, from accumulated lossess, lack of supplies or hopelessness of further successes begins to retreat, the lightfooted Kafirs attack hin on all sides like a swarm of hornets. Dogged resistance is turned into furious bravery. A Kafir never fights so well as when the advantage is on his side. He plays a wining game splendidly. Each man tries to emulate the traditionsal heroes of his tribe and will prerform the grandest deeds to gain the admiration of his fellows. I was told of the Kafir man Shyok that on one occasion he dashed single-handedly into a group of the enemy, stabbed to death several people right and left and then escaped uninjured. He is a man of enormous strength and ispite of his weight, he is as active as a leopard” (op cit p 567).

WRITES GEORGE SCOTT ROBERTSON PHILOSOPHICALLY:
“Civilization abruptly fell aspleep centuries ago in Kafirstan….and still is in a dormant state......... These Kafirs constantly become degenrated until their tribal headquarters are merely a robbers’ nests…….. If it were not for their splendid courage, their domestic affections, and their overpowering love for freedom, these Kafirs would indeed have been a hateful people..........In other respects, they are what they have been made by uncontrollable circumstances. For them, the world has not grown softer as it has grown older. Its youth could not be crueler than its present maturity, but if they had been different, they would have been enslaved centuries ago. ……Their present ideas, and all the associations of their history and their religion, are simply bloodshed, assassinations, and blackmailing; yet they are not savages. Some of them have the heads of Philosopers and statesmen. Their features are Aryans and their mental capabilities are great, their love for decoration, their carvings, their architecture…. all point to a time when they were higher in the himan scale than they are of a present. They never could be brutal savages, like some of the African races….because they are of different type…. but they are as degraded in many respects as it is possible for this type ever to become.....” (op cit p 162-63).


NOTE: Numerically, the Katir/Kamtoz (over 30 thousand) are more important than all the remaining tribes of Kafirstan put together. The Kamoz Kafirs are numberd only about 15-20 thousand out of total of little over 0.1 million population of Nuristan.. By virtue of their unity among themselves, militarily, the Kam kafirs are the most predominant group in whole of Nuristan. George Scott Robertson styles the Kams as the virtual kings of Bashgul valley. They have been described by several investigators as the persistent 'trouble makers' in Kafirstan/Nuristan.

COMMENT: The Great guerilla Commander and Hero, Anwar Amin, who had played a crucial role in an organnized and sustained resistance against the Soviets and who was mainly reponsible in bringing them to their very knees as also ultimately shaking the vast Soviet Empire too its very foundations, belonged to the famous Kam (Kamoz) tribe of Nuristan.(Richard F. Strand).


By LS.THIND on Saturday, November 24, 2001 - 6:22 am:

PART III

DONALD N. WILBER ON KAFIRS:

“Parts of Nuristan (Kafirstan) formed a portion of Greek satrapy of the Paropamisadae in the fourth and third c B.C. The People were then called Kambojas and described as of mixed Indo-Iranian descent. Possibly they occupied a much larger area then and were gradually forced from central Afghanistan into their present mountains by the Moslem onslaught. One of their principal tribes is still called Kam or Kamtoz…”

“The Moslem appellation of Kafirs is mentioned in 1020 A.D. by the historians of Mahmud of Ghazni. The other references to them were made by writers in the fouteenth, fifteenth and sixteenth centuries and during the Moghul period. In 1839, the Kafirs sent a deputation to Sir William Macnaghten in Jalabad, claiming relationship with fair skinned British troops who had invaded the country.”

“Historically, the Afghans are first mentioned by name (Avagana) by early sith century Indian astronmer Varaha Migira in his Brahat Samhiti. A little later, the Chinese traveler Hiuen Tsang mentions a tribe of A-po’kien, located in the Sulayman mountains. The earliest Moslem works mentioning them are the Hudud al’Alam (982 A.D.), the Tarikh-I-Yamini and those of Biruni. The Indian appellation Pathan does not occur till 16th c, but the change into Pathan (from plural of Pushtun; Pushtana) indicates that it must have been used at a much earlier date. Biruni places the Afghans in western frontier mountains of India. No Afghan settlement west of Ghazni is mentioned by early authors. The origin and early history of westernmost Pushtun tribe, the Abdalis remains obsecure” [op cit, p 40]

cf: “Mahmud Gazhni had to fight with ‘Kafirs’ Afghans living in the Sulayman mountains ranges. In the war between Prithvi Raj Chohan and Mohamad Dhori, the Afgans fought on both sides…This obviously proves that all Afghans did not embrace Islam yet…..(Afghan Immigration in early middle ages: article contributed by K. S. Lal in the book “Studies in asian History, p 21).

Cf: “In warfare at the end of twelfth century between the Moslems and Hindus, Afghans are represented as fighting on both sides, which suggests that although legend places their conversion in the early Islamic period, they had not yet all been converted to Islam. Repeatedly, they are referred to as a rebellious and turbulent people. Timur considered them (Kafirs of Sulayman) brigands and is reported to have ravaged their strongholds ain the Sulayman mountains. Their reputation as a fierce race of mountain robbers and occasionally, soldiers of fortune turned to fame with rise to power in India of the Afghans adventurer, Daulat Khan Ludi of Ludi clan of Ghilzai”………. [ibid, pp 40-41]

“In physical type, most Kafirs are above average height, with slender build, hair ranging from straight to wavy and skin color described as resembling that of residents of Punjab and presumably similar to Afghans. The nose is slender and straight or sometimes acquiline in shape. …..Only Presungeli are noticeably different, powerfully built, with heavy low forehead, close-set eyes, a broader nose, a receding chin, a darker skin color—and it is possible that the Presungeli represent the aboriginal inhabitants of the area”

“The Kafir tribal structure as described by Robertson was similar to that of other tribes in Afghanistan, but in addition to the tribesmen there were two non-tribal classes, the poor freemen and the slaves. The slaves were ususlly the war captives, although they might be purchased from other Kafirs. House slaves lived with family which owned them and enjoyed a higher status than did the artisan slaves who were treated much as members of occupational castes were in India. All craftmen among the Kafirs—such as wood carvers, bootmakers, weavers were slaves, as were drummers. Blacksmiths were considered of lower caste than other slaves, but all slaves were impure and were prohibited from approaching the shrine or house of a priest…..”

“One receives status in the tribe by killing Moslems. And the man who killed four or five Moslems earned the the right to waer a special kind of shawl. In raids upon Moslems, with whom there were contant blood feuds, the killer took an ear or scalp lock for a trophy in addition to whatever booty could be seized. When a raiding party returned home, a victory dance was held. There were usually no feuds within the tribe but if a fight did start, it was the duty of all witness to intervene at once. In the event a man was killed, his murderer had the choice either to pay compensation or go into exile”. (Afghanistan, its people, its Society, its culture, 1962 Donald N. Wilber, p 50, 51, 311)


SIR GEORGE SCOTT ROBERTSON: A BRITISH INVESIGATOR.

Scott Robertson spent several years with Kafirs in Kafirstan in late 19th c . He resaeched the various Kafir tribes of Kafirstan. He put his findings in a book called “The Kafirs of Hindukush”. The text refers to the times when these people were still non-believers (so-called Kafirs). In 1895, their leaders were duplicitously taken prisoners and the so-called Kafirs were forecibly converted to Islam by Afghan Chief Amir Abdur Rahman Khan of Kabol. After conversion, they were re-named as Nuris (enlightened ones). Their province was thence afterwards named as Nuristan (land of light). The story Sir George Scott Robertson narrates relates to pre-islamization of Kafirstan.

SOME EXCERPTS FROM HIS BOOK “THE KAFIRS OF HINDUKUSH”.

States Scott Robertson: “….Thus the upper part of Bashgul Valley is called Katirgul (Lutdeh in Chitrali, or Kamtoz in Pushtu), the middle part Muman (Madugal in Chitrali) and the lower part Kam (Kamdesh in Chitrali or Kamoz in Pushtu)” [ Kaffirs of Hindukush, 1896, p 71, Sir George Scott Robertson, K.C. S. I.)

The Kafir Tribes: (as of 1890):

(1)Katirs (consisting of Kamoz Kafirs, Kti or Katawar Kafirs, Kulam Kafirs, Ramgulis Kafirs)

(2)Siaposh ( Kams/Kamtoz Shiaposh, Muman/Madugul Siposh, Kashtoz Shiaposh, Jezhis Kafirs, Gourdesh Siaposh)

(3)Sfedposh/Lalposh ( Wais, Ashkuns, Presuns/Virons)

The above was the general classification which Scott Robertson did in 1890.

This classification was based on colour of robes which these tribes would wear in those times. Note that this classification does not divide the Kafirs on ethnic basis. Ethnically, the Katirs and Siaposh tribes are said to belong to one ethnic group according to Sir Robertson. The Wai Kafirs he describes more closer to the Greeks. The Presuns/Virons (of Sfedpiosh general group) and Gourdesh (from Siaposh general group) are from ancient tribes which are non-Aryans according to George Scott.

The important subtribes of Kam or Kam people are: Utahdari, Demidari, Garakadari, Sukadari, Bilezhedari, Waidari, Lanandari, Kanardari, Gutkechdari and Batardari Kams. The first six are most important.

The Chief clans of the Katirs (Kamoz Kafirs) are:
Jannahdari, Barmodari, Shakldari, Mutadawadari, Charedari, Shtukdari and Sowadari. The Jannahdari are wealthiest and overshadow all other Karirs (Kamoz) subtribes.


States Sir Scott Robertson: “The Katirs(Kamtoz), the Kams (Kamoz), and the Wais* are mainly descended from ancient Indian population of East Afghanistan who refused to embrace Islam in 10th c A.D. and fled for refuge from victorious Moslems to hilly countries of Kafirstan. The Jezis and the Aroms (Gourdesh) of Siaposh group are the remanents of other races who were living in these hilly regions before the advent of above three subtribes. They were either driven away or were amalgamated into the above three invading tribes. The Presuns of Sfedposh are the aboriginal (non-Aryan) race”. (op cit p 157)

*Note: George Scott Robertson describes the Wais Kafirs as having some glimpses of ancient Greek cultural influence though.

Investigators like Scott Robertson, Richard F. Strands etc have analyzed all the Kafir tribes of Kafirstan. They all agree that Kams of Kamdesh are though comparatively small in number, but because of their unity, they are the virtual kings of Bashgul valley. Again and again, they have been described as the trouble makers in the Kafirstan. “Inspite of their being in microscopic minority as compared to the Katir , Gourdesh, Madugul, Wai, Ashkun, Presun tribes of the Hindukush Kafirs, the Kam tribes are the virtual kings of the entire Bashgul valley area. This is simply because of unity among Kam their tribes”, writes Sir George Scott Roberstson

“As there is no rock inscriptions, no ancient books, nor any literature of any kind to be found in Kafirstan, and as the traditions of the people themselves give such small help in forming any opinion concerning their origin, the only hope which remains that the Kafirs may be eventually assigned their proper place in general history of the world is from a comparative study of their language, their manners and customs, and their religious ceremonies, as well as from their cranial measurements, and other anthrometric observations.; that they have no admixture of Tarter (Mongol/Turkic) blood seems obvious; that they came from west, at least the great majority of them, is their own fixed idea, and more is more than probable. If there be point of resemblence between the present Kafirs and the ancient Greek sacrificial observances, and if certain of their domestic utensils…such for instance, as Wai wooden dish stand—may seem to be fashioned in Grecian mould, it may fairly be conjectured that some of the Kafir tribes, at any rate, are still INFLUENCED, by Greek colonists of Alexander; that these Kafirs having never been under the rule of Muslemans, may possibly represent some of the people of Eastern Afganistan, as they were before the victorious Moslem defeated and converted them to Islam” (op cit p 161-162)

The Wai and Ashkun Kafirs as a tribe are either from ancient Yavanas or are probably under the cultural influence of those (Yavana=Greek) people who have been described to be living as neighbors to Kamboja people per Asoka's Rock Edicts (R.E. V: Yona-Kamboja-Gandharanam; R.E. XIII: Yone-Kambojesu …R.E. XIII) .Or of the Ramayana…. Kamboja-Yona sawya (Ramayana Kishakanda Kanda 43/11), ….cf: Yone-Kamboj-Gandharam (of Mahabharata) and Yone-Kambojesu (of Pali religious texts etc.).

With reference to the above said Wai Kafirs who are described by Scott Robertson as being under some subtle ancient cultural Greek influence, we personally see in them the reflection of those Kambojas of northern Archotia/Kandhar (Central Afghanistan) who were neighbors to the Yanvanas of Southern Archotia (cf: Shar-I-Kuna Inscriptions in Greek/Aramaic scripts). Thus most possibly, the three major tribes of the Kafirs (Katirs, Kams, Wais) have all probably retreated from Kandhar. Some of them were under Greek cultural influence for obvious reasons being their long time neighbors in Kandhar, they had imbibed certain Grecian manners, customs and some linguistic influences from their neighbors.


By LS.THIND on Saturday, November 24, 2001 - 5:32 am:

PART II

BRITISH INVESTIGATOR M. ELPHINSTONE ON KAFIRS OF HINDUKUSH: (19th c A.D.)

In the earlier nineteenth century, a British researcher Sir Mountstuart Elphenstone had also traveled through some parts of the impenetrable Kafirstan area of the Hindukush mountains and had met with several tribal groups who were called Caumoze, Camojee, Camoze or Cam (Ref: Elphinstone, An account of the kingdom of Cabol, Vol II, page 375-377). Their language, like that of rest of the Kamoze/Kamoje Kafirs of the Bashgul valley is Kati which is dialect of Indo-European language called Dardic language.

“The derivation of their language seem fatal to the decent of the Kafirs from Greeks, and their traditions do not furnish us with any distinct account of their origin. The most general and only credible story is that they were expelled by advancing Moslemaans from neighborhood of Qandhar made several migrations from place to place before they reached their present abode. They allege that they consisited of four tribes called Camoze, Hilar, Silar and Camoje of which the three former embraced the Mohammdan religion but the fouth retained its ancient faith and quitted the native country” (Source: An Account of the Kingdom of Cabol, 1972, Oxford University, Press London, N.Y. Vol II, p 376-377 by M. Elphinstone).

“Caufirs are remarkable for their fairness and beauty of their complexions………”.(op cit p 376).

“I must observe that….Pusha tribe of Caufirs which is stated to live towards Caubol and which I doubt not is the origin of Pushawees mentioned by Bauber and still found in the Cohistan of Caubol”. (op cit p 376)

The tribes name of the Kaffirs mentioned by M. Elphinstonte are:

Camojee (Camoze, Caumoze, Cam), Camtoze, Kishtojee, Moondigul,Puroonee, Tewaanee, Poonooz, Ushkong, Usmshee, Sunno, Koolumee, Roose, Turkuma, Nisha, Chumga, Wave, Khallum, Demish, Eerait etc (op cit p 376).

"The name Caumojee, Camoze, Caumoze is apparently connected with Kamboja". (M. ElphinstoneAn Account of the Kingdom of caubol, p 619, f,n).

There are several languages among the Caufirs but they have many words in common, and have a near connection with Sanskrit….but also has Persian and Pushto touch in it. (a thousand called by Persian/Pushtoon name). (op cit p 376).

“I imagine the inhabitants of Cohistan of caubol to have the same origins , particularly as the name Cohistan is applied to all lately converted Caifirs”(op cit p 376).

“Yet there are certain fixed festivals which prevail among the Camojees of Camdesh and which are general. Some of them are remarkable, but non resembles any festival I am familiar with except one in which the Caufirs throw ashes at each other as the Hindoos do a sort of poweder during holi” (op Cit p 380).
“Though exasperated to such fury by the persecutions of the Mohammadans, the Caufirs are in general harmless affectionate and kind hearted people. Though passionate, they are easily appeased. They are merry, playful, found of laughter and altogather of a social and joyous disposition. Even to Mohammadans, they are kind when they admit them as their guests…” (op cit p 387).

W. K. FRASER:
“All that seem at all certain is that parts of modern Kafirstan formed a portion of Greek Strappy of Paropamisadea in ¾ c B.C. the people were then called Kambojas who were of mixed Indo-Iranian descent. In fact the scholars are of the opinion that Kamboja and Kapisha the native city of adjoining Greek Capital might be identical”. ”.(Afghanistan, A Study of Political Developments in Central Southern Asia, 3rd edition, 1967, p 58, W. K. Fraser- Tytler, M. C. Gillett ).

“Now it seem more probable that at this period the ancestors of the Kafirs inhabited an area of much greater extent than at present. They may, in fact, have been, as they themselves say, the ancient inhabitants of Central Afghanistan who were gradually forced to retreat into the hills in face of continued Mohammadan encroachments. It is therefore possible that the Kafirs the Kambojas who were apparently good friends of Greeks are the same people, the name Kambojas giving way to word Kafir which is common Moslem name for idolators, but being partly retained in the name of one of their principal tribe called Kam or Kamtoz/ Kamoz”.(Afghanistan, A Study of Political Developments in Central Southern Asia, 3rd edition, 1967, p 58, W. K. Fraser- Tytler, M. C. Gillett ).

Dr Thoms Holdich D. Sc. on Kafirs.
“While surveying the Kunar valley along the Kafirstan borderland, I made the acquaintance of two Kam Kafrs of Kamdesh. Who stayed some little time in the Afghan camp, in which my own tent waspitched and who were objects of my much interest to members of the boundary commsission there assembled. They submitted gracefully enough to much cross-examination and amongst other things, they also sang a war hymn to their god Gish and exceuted a religious dance. Gish is not supreme in their mythology, but he is the god who receives by far the greatest amount of attention, for the Kafir of the lower Bashgul valley * is ever on the the raid, always on the watch for a chance for a Mohhamadan life. It is indeed curious that while tolerant enough to allow of the existence of Mohamadan communities, in their midist, they ( Kafirs) rank the life of a Mussulman as one of the greatest object of attainment; so much so that a Kafir's social position is dependent on the activity he displays in searching out the common enemy, and his very right to sing hymns of adoration to his war-god called GISH is strictly limited by the number of Mohammdan lives he has taken…….The Hymn which the Kafirs recired or sang was translated word for word, with the aid of a Chitrali interpreter, by a Munshi, who has the reputation of being most careful interpreter, and following is almost the literal ttranscript, for which I am indebted to Dr MacNab of the Q.O Corpus Guidees: -


· thou who from Gir Nysa’s (lofty heights) was born
· Who from its sevenfold portals didst emerge
· On Katan Chirak thou hast set thine eyes
· Towards (the depth of) Sum Bushgal dost go
· In Sum Baral assembled you have been.
· Sanji from the heights you see; Sanji you consult?
· The council sits. O mad one, wither goest thou?
· Say Sanji. Why dost thou go forth?

“The Gir Nysa means mountanin of Nysa. Katan Chirak is ancient town in Minjan Valley Badakshan. Now in ruins. But was the first large place the Kafirs captured and apparently held to be “symbol of victory”. This reference connects the Kamdesh Kafirs with Badakshan and shows these people to have been more wide spread than they are at present……….”

“The eminent linguistic authority, Dr Grierson thinks the language in which the hymn is recited is derived from what the Sanskrit writers said was the language of the Pisacas, a people whom they dubbed as ‘demons’ and “eaters of raw flesh”, and who may be represented by Pashai dwellers in Laghman and in its vicinity to-day. Possibly, the name of the chief village of Kunar valley Pashat may claim the same origin, for Laghman and Kunar both spread their plains to foot of the mountains of Kafirstan” ……” (Source: The Gates of India, p 131-133; Dr Thomas Holdixch, D. Sc.).


“Kafirstan has ever been an unexplored region—a mountain wilderness into which no call of Buddhism ever lured the pilgrim, no Moslem conqueror (excepting per haps Timur) ever set his foot, until the late Mir Abdur Rahman essayed to reduce that region and make it a part of civilized Afghanistan (1896 A.D.). Even he was content to leave it alone after a year or two of vain hammering at its southern gates. Kafirstan formed a part of the medieval province or kingdom of Bolor; but it is always written as the home of an uncouth and savage race of people, with whom, it was difficult to establish intercourse. Kafirstan is however, in these modern days very much curtailed as the home of the Kafirs. Undoubtedly, many of the border tribes fringing the country (Dehgans, Nimchas) who are now to be numbered amongst the most fanatical of Moslem clans, are comparatively new recruits to the faith, and therefore, handle the new broom with tradirional ardour; but they were not so long ago members of the great mixed community of of Kafirs, who driven from many directions into most inaccessible fastnesses of the hills by the advance of stronger races north and south, have occupied remote valleys, preserving their own dioalects, mixing up in strange confusion of Brahman, Zoroasterian and Buddhist tenets with classical mythology, each valley with apparently a law and a language of its own, until it is impossible to unravel the threads of their complicated relationship. Here we should expect to find (and we do find) the last relics of the Greek occupation of Bacteria and here are certainly remnants of a yet more ancient Persian stock, with all the flotsam and jetsam of High Asia intermingled. They are from point of view of Kabol court, all lumped to gather as Kafirs under two denominations, Shiaposh and Lalposh; and not till scientific investigation, such as has not yet reached Afghanistan, can touch them shall we know more than we do now…….. “ (Ref: The Gates of India 1910, page 270 by Dr Thomas Holdich, D.Sc).


*NOTE: The land of the Kam Kafirs.


By LS.THIND on Saturday, November 24, 2001 - 12:13 am:

THE KAFIRS BEFORE 1896 A.D./THE NURISTANIS AFTER 1896 A.D.

KAFIRSTAN BEFORE 1896 A.D./NURISTANI AFTER 1896 A.D.

The Bashgul valley area of Kafirstan in Kunar was inhabited by some Kafir Kamboj tribes which have been variously called Kam, Kamoje, Kamoze, Kamozee Kamtoz and Kastoz by the several investigators. This area was a portion of ancient country known as Kapisha (Panini). The scholars have investigated and now accept that Kapisha and Kamboja are synonymous terms. Some historians state that these Kafirs people are the original inhabitants of the country known as Kapisha. While some state that some Kafirs tribes have come from outside, from Badakshan, Kabol as well as Central Afghanistan (Kandhar). Whataever be the truth in the above statements of the scholars, it is undoubtedly true that many of these Kafir tribes are the descendents of ancient Kamboja tribe. We will not involve ourselves into the controversy as to whether the Nuristani (earstwhile Kafirs) of Kam/Kamoz, Katir/Kamtoz and Wai clans had moved from outside or are the descendents of the ancient Kapisha (Kamboja) tribe of Paropamisadae region of the Persian/Greek chronicles.

The Kam/Kamoz tribe (of Sir Robert Scott) though still numerically about 20,000 is the most dominant tribe of Nuristan. Second largest group called Katirs (or Kamtoz of Robertson Scott) The history of Nuristan, in fact, is the history of the Kam (Kamoz) tribe. Every writer/invesigator who has visited Nuristan and investigated the Kafirstani/Nuristani tribes has mainly concentrated on Kam tribe (being the star tribe of the Bashgul valley) and has devoted 90% of the material to Kam people of Kamdesh. They have, again as again, been styled as the ‘trouble makers’ in Nuristan and have been designated as the virtual kings of Bashgul valley (Kafirs of Hindukush, Sir Robertson Scott)
************************************************************************
KAFFIRS (NURISTANI) KAMBOJA TRIBES OF HINDUKUS:
ANCIENT KAPISH, KAPISA, KOPHEN, KAPICENE, KIPIN ( ~CAMBYSIS?))

Historians state that Kafir and Katir are synonymous words (for ref: Kamboja People and the Country 1979 by Dr. J. Lal Kamboj, Delhi University). The Kafirs Katirs both refer to the people of Kafirstan (Kti, Katirs and Katawar=residents of the Katawar of medieval age= ancient Katas, a Kashatrya people).

Cf: “In the west lived Kambojas and Katas who were expert in the warfare and were famous for their tenacity and courage” [Ref: Hindu polity (The Ordinance of Manu) 1972 page 29 by Dr Arthur Coke Burnell].

According to Dr Thomas Holdich: "It appears that name Katawar was the general name for northern regions of Kafirstan…." (Ref: Gateways of India 1910, page 355, by Dr Thomas Holdich). Dr George Scott Robertson differentiates Katirs from Kti or Katawer Kafirs living in the modern Kti valley neighboring the Bashgul valley which region is the land of the Kamoj/Kamoz Kafirs.

A fraction of the Mediaeval age (14 th century AD) Katirs, Ktis, Katawer Kafirs of the Kti or Katawer valley are the modern Kafirs of Kafirstan while the rest form the fringe of the population who have over the years embraced Islam and now constitute the inveterate and truculent Mohamdans of the surrounding Afghanistan (Gate Way to India, Dr Thomas Holdich)

In fact, Katirs are an important and numerous tribal clan of the Shiaposh tribal group of Kafirstan and one of their principal tribes is still called Kamtoze in Pushtu” [ Kafirs of Hindukush, Sir George Scott Robertson (1896)].

The word Kapisha or Kapisa is believed to have evolved from Sanskrit Kamboja, Persian Kambujia/Kambaujia or the Greek Kambysis. The inhabitants of Kapisa were a scion of the Kamboja people. In their writings, the ancient Arab geographers have written Kapisha, Kapisa , Kophen, Kapicene, Kipin etc as Kapis-stan. By popular mistake and by twist of history and time, this Kapis-stan later turned first into Kapir-stan (literally a land of the Kapir people, where Kapirs may be the same as Katirs) which further evolved into Kafir-stan which literally means the land of the ‘infidels’ or non-believers. Linguistically, the word ‘Kafir’ is derived from word ‘Kapir’ ‘Kapir’ from ‘Kapis’ which is philological variation of some of the numerous Kamboja synonyms like Kieufieu, Kaofeu, Kubha, Kophen, Kapiscene, Kipin, Cambysis/Kambysis etc as wel will see soon.

Cf: “The word Kafir in Kafir-stan needs some explanation. This does not seem to same as the Arabic word which implies ‘non-believer’ or ‘idolator’. To all probability, this Kafir is the philogical evolution from an ancient term ‘Kapir’. This way, Kafirstan, in fact, should mean the ’land of the Kapir people’. This term Kapir appears to be a version of Sanskrit term Kapisha. Here ‘sh’ of Kapish changed into ‘r’ in Kapir. This is not a surprise. The name of King Kanishak who ruled this land is found written as Kanerak as well. Here ‘sh’ of Kanishaka has changed into ‘r’ in Kanerka. This further evidences that the ancient name ‘Kapish’ first evoved into ‘Kapir’ and still later into well known ‘Kafir’. And Dr S Levi has already demonstrated that Kipin was another version of Kapir. Further, it has also been demonstarated that, philogically, ancient term Kapisha is another version of standard Sanskrit term Kamboja. (Geographical and Economical Studies in the Mahabharata, Upayana Parva, JUPHS, Vol XVI., Part II, 1943, pp48-53,Ancient Kamboja People and the Country, 1981, p 46, Dr J. L. Kamboj; cf: Cultural Heritage of India Vol I page 44,)

Based on the establishment of similarity between terms Kapisha with Kamboja, by Dr S. Levi, another Indologist Dr Motichander has suggested that the prefix ‘Kam’ in Kamdesh, Kamash/Kamach (name of a river in Kairstan), etc is very significant. In Kafir language, Kamdesh is also called Kambrom. The upper part of Bashgul valley is called Kargul. In Chitrali it is called Lutdeh while in Pushto it is Kamtoz. The middle part of Bashgul valley is called Madugul in Chitrali. The lower part is called Kam. In Chitrali it is called Kamdesh, while in Pashtu it is Kamoz. The Kam of Bashgul and Kamtoz of Pashtu reminds us of the ancient Kambojas of Kafirstan. [ Ancient Kamboja People and the Country, 1981, p 46, Dr J. L. Kamboj]

IMPORTANT: There are other relics of ancient Kamboja tribe still found in this land of Kafirstan of today (e.g. a place name Kamach or Kamash (p 158, Kafirs of Hindukush), a river name Kamah or Kama (p 81, Kafirs of Hindukush; palso called pech), and a pass named as Kammoh or Kammah. Besides, a villages in the area is also known as Kamu, Kamo (p 77 Kafirs of Hindukush), a hill known as Kama-tol (Kam cliff), a small valley in Bashagul known as Kama-gul (Richard F. Strand, Accounts of Kam History and Culture) also cf: Headquarters of Kama tribes is known as Kamdesh (Country of Kams…cf Kamboj desh) or Kambrom. Etc. Ref: The Kafirs of Hindukush p 77, by George Scott Robertson; pl also ref to the The official Gazzetteer of Afghanistan).

Also the geographical region of Afghanistan to the south-east of Kabol river, falling between Jalabad and the famous Khyber Pass of Sfedkoh mountain system is also still called the Kamm or Kamma valley (Ref: Struggle for Afghanistan 1991 page 158 by Nancy P Newell, Richards C. Newell) which further reminds us of the ancient Kamboja vestige left in this area, south-east of the Kabol river. [cf: ref: Military Text Books Series: “From Black Mountain to Wazirstan, by Col H. C. Wylly, C. B. 1912, p 237, 227, cf also: Kamma Daka, Kamma Shilman, Kamma Bela regions names. These regions are the modern habitats of the Afridi tribe]


Cf: “There is apparent trace of their (Kamboja’s) name in the ‘Caumozee’ of Kafirstan, who may have retreated to the mountains before the advance of Turk tribes”: (Vishnu Purana, p 299, f.n. 15, H. H. Wilson; The Achamenids and India, p 13, De S. Chattopadhya ).

Cf: Writes Dr Nand Lal Dey” “According to Dr Loh, the Shiaposh tribes living in the Hindukush mountains are the descendents of the Kamboja people. (The Geographical Dictionery of Ancient and Medieval India p 87, by Dr. Nundo Lal Dey)

Cf: “The western boundaries of ancient Kamboja must have reached Kafirstan. Elphinstone found in that district tribes like the Caumojee, Camoze and Camoje whose name remind us of the Kambojas” [ ref: Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 133 by Dr H. C. Raychaudhury, Dr B. N. Mukerjee, cf: M. Elphinstone, an account of the kingdom of Caubol, Vol II, pp. 375-377; cf: Bombay Gazetteer, I. 1, 498 n; cf: Journal of Royal Asiatic Society, 1843, 140; cf: Journal and Proceeding of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, 1874, 260 n; cf: Wilson H. H. Vishnu Purana, P III, 292].

“There are tribes like Caumojee, Camtoze and Caumozee living in eastern Afghanistan. British researcher M. Elphinstone has found that these terms are apparently connected with Sanskrit term Kamboj. Before the arrivel of Turks, these tribes must have retreated into their present mountainous abodes.” [Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 43-44, Dr J. L. Kamboj].

Cf: “The Kambojas were inhabitants of regions around Hindukush mountain.. According to Elphinstone, many modern Kafirs of this region still address them as Kamohs” (Sindhant Kaumde, Arathparkashaka, 1966, pp 20-22, by Acharya Radha Raman Pande)

Cf: Dr W. W. Tarn calls Kafirstan and Kapicene or Kapisa as the homeland of Kambojas. This region has also been known in history as the Parapamisdae Strappy of the Greeks as well as of the Achaemenian kings of Persia. "The Kapisha was the gate way of Kamboja country and formed its integral part" opines Dr Tarn (Ref: (Ref: The Greeks in Bacteria and India 1966 p 170, 461, by Dr W. W. Tarn ).

Cf: “All that seem at all certain is that parts of modern Kafirstan formed a portion of Greek Strappy of Paropamisadea in 4th – 3rd c B.C. the people were then called Kambojas who were of mixed Indo-Iranian descent. In fact, the scholars are of the opinion that Kamboja and Kapisha the native city of adjoining Greek Capital might be identical”. ”.(Afghanistan, A Study of Political Developments in Central Southern Asia, 3rd edition, 1967, p 58, W. K. Fraser- Tytler, M. C. Gillett ).

Cf: “Parts of Nuristan (Kafirstan) formed a portion of Greek satrapy of the Paropamisadae in the fourth and third c B.C. The People were then called Kambojas and described as of mixed Indo-Iranian descent. Possibly they occupied a much larger area then and were gradually forced from central Afghanistan into their present mountains by the Moslem onslaught. One of their principal tribes is still called Kam or Kamtoz…” (Afghanistan, its people, its Society, its culture, 1962, p 50, Donald N. Wilber)

Cf: Kadphizes is not a personal name, but derived from the name of a country which is variously called Kapisha, Kamboja etc” (EI., Vol XIX-1, p 11).


By LS.THIND on Friday, November 23, 2001 - 11:59 pm:

MOST PROBABLE ETYMOLOGY OF MODERN ‘AFGHAN’ FROM ANCIENT ‘ASHVAKAN’: (PARTLY BASED ON LINGUISTICS).

There are two consonants sounds 'SH' and 'V' coming between the two vowel sounds "A" and 'A" in the SANSKRIT WORD ASHVAKA… == >‘ASHVAKAYANA’ of PANINI IV-1, 110, 99), ‘ASHVAKANA’ (of J. W. Mcgrindlle)’. Now remember the case of 'KAMBOJA/KAMBOJ' where also the hard consonant sound'J" coming inbetween two vowels "A" and "A" had got 'elitted'!On similar lines, the consonant sound "SH" (though softer than "J") in term ‘ASHVKANA’ falling between two vowels “A” and “A” has also got to be 'elited' by laws of linguistics. Remember that consonant sound 'SH' occupies a place immediately preceding consonant 'J' in DEVANAGARI SCRIPT (CHA, CHHA (=SH), JA, JHA ETC) and it belongs to the 'same line' of sounds in the DEVANAGARI script, though it is little softer than 'J'. Hence when consonant 'SH' gets elited from 'ASHVAKANA' we get the term AVAKANA.

THIS AVAKANA, IN FACT, IS THE ETYMOLOGICAL FORE-FATHER/PREDECESSOR OF THE ‘ABAGANA’, APAKANA names mentioned in SASSANIAN SHAHPURA I AND SHAPURA III records, 'AVAGANA'/'VOKANA' OF VRAHAMIHIRA'S BRAHTA SAMHITA, 'AVAGANA' OF FIRDOUSI’S SHAHNAMA, 'AP-O-KIEN' OF CHINESE TRAVELLER HIUEN TSANG, 'APAGAN' OF (Dr K. P. JAYSWAL) AND ‘AFGHAN’ OF THE MODERN ERA.

Also we find numerous instances in INDO-ARYAN languages where soft ‘V’ and hard “B” are used interchangeably as also where “P’ and “PH”/”F” are used interchangeably.

JUST TRY TO CONCENTRATE ON THE ABOVE AND YOU WILL KNOW HOW THE MODERN TERM AFGHAN EVOLVED FROM ANCIENT ASHVAKA/ASHVAKAN (ASHVAKAYAN OF PANINI IV-1, 110, 99).


By LS.THIND on Thursday, November 22, 2001 - 6:21 am:

'Ashvaka' is a Sanskrit word derived from Ashva. Ashva means the horse. Ashvaka has equivalent in Prakritic languages as 'Assaka' which also find mention in numerous pali Texts.

'Ashvaka' means 'horsemen'.

'Ashvakan' (=Ashvakayan of Panini) means 'horsemen' as well as it also means 'the land or home of horses'.

As stated above, the term 'Ashvakan/Ashvakayan' has also the meaning of "ASSAN-AYATNAM' == >' LAND OF HORSES'. [cf: Kamboja Assan-ayatnam Vol I, p 121, Sumanglavilasini)

Ancient Kamboja was indeed the celebrated 'land of horses' as has been documented by Sumanglavilasini, Mahabharata, Jaina Uttaradhyana Sutra and numerous other Sanskrit/Pali texts as well as by many Inscriptions. Some clans of the Kambojas who were exclusively dedicated to horse-raising/breeding and horse-trading profession were popularly addressed as 'Ashvakas or Ashvakans and Ashvayans' in common parlance. All Kambojas were very famous as cavalary-men and have especially been designated as Ashva-yudh-Kushlah (expert cavalry men)

Tatha Yavana-Kamboja Mathurambhitashach ye/
atai ashva-yudh-kushlah dakshinhatyaasicharminh://
(MBH 12/101/5).

These assakenois/aspasios (Aspasian/assakenian=Ashvakan/Ashvakayan, Ashvayan) were the very Kamboja clans who had offered the stoutest resistance to Alexandra, the Great at 'Massaga fort' [modern Mashkayan]in Swat/Kunar valleys..... . Along with their valiant wives and fearless daughters, these Kamboja clans had fought the Macedonian Army tooth and nail and majority of them had embraced martyrdom. We have already discussed this 'very splendid episode' of the Kamboj history in details, in our previous postings.

And undoubtedly, we are extremely proud of our 'brave Kamboja mothers and sisters' of Massaga who had valiantly crossed the swords with the well trained army of one of the greatest generals in the world history. We bow our heads in respect and salute to our these warrior mothers and sisters!!!!!

N.B. Our previous posts on "Ashvakan Kamboja gave their name to Afghans/Afghanistan" have some inadvertent typo errors as also some off-topic material (some sensitive readers must already have noted it). Sorry, I forgot to wittle down the paste-up which I picked up from some other site. However, the extra information I supplied does not hurt any way.


By THIND on Tuesday, November 20, 2001 - 8:24 am:

I have not yet seen/read A. H. Bingley's 'English' book on 'The Sikhs' inspite of my desire to do so.I have only presented the text of Bingley on Kambojs from a 'Punjabi text' translating it back into 'English' as best as I could do. My translation might have been somewhat different from the 'original text' of Bingley.

I'm sure there are some readers on this thread who might have access to A. H. Bingley's book on 'The Sikhs' in 'English'. We will appreciate if he can post the English version of Bingley's text on Kambojs on this thread.


MY TRANSLATION:
Writes A. H. Bingley: “…..One critique describes them ( Kambohs) as a tall, strong, skillful and stiff- necked race and therefore RESMBLING MORE WITH THE AFGHANS than ANY OF THE OTHER HINDU RACES living in the plains of Punjab among whom they (Kambohs) have now settled for several generations…….They are fit for military recruitment because they are generally a hardy and of powerful physique” . [The Sikhs, A. H. Bingley, 1970, p 57].


The following text of Mr Reginald Holder about Kambojs is however in Original English.

“They (Kambohs) make excellent soldiers, being of a very fine physique and possessing great courage……….” [Source: The Sikhs and the Sikhs wars: Reginald Holder (From the Punjab past and present Vol IV, Part I, April 1970 Serial No 7, edited by Dr Ganda Singh).]


By LS.THIND on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 10:07 am:

GENESIS OF TERM AFGHAN

PART I-A

TRADITIONAL ACCOUNTS ABOUT THE ORIGIN OF TERM OR NAME AFGHAN:

There is a traditional, puranic or hearsay story about the origin of name Afghan. According to Makhzan-e-Afghani written by Niamatulah and Mustaothi Tarikh-e-Guzida, 18th generations down Adam was born Ibrahim who had Talut or Soul as his descendent. Talut had two sons Irmia and Girmia. Irmia had a son named Afghan who is believed to have given his name to Afghans. Qais was successor to Afghan who had come and settled in Ghor in Afghanistan and embraced Islam under Prophet Mohammed. After conversion, he was given the name Abdur Rashid by the Lord, Prophet Mohammed and was conferred the title of Malik or Badshah.

Pathans believe that they are all descended from a common ancestor, Qais. He is said to have met the Prophet Muhammad. The prophet gave Qais the name "Pthun, and Qais was to take Islam back to his home. One of Qais's sons was name Afghana, who had four sons. Every Pathan traces his descent from one of these four sons of Afghana.

Cf: “The Abdali clan to whom the famous Afghan general Ahmad Shah Abdali alias Durani (Pearl of Pearls) belonged, claims to be direct descendents of some PERSONAGE named Abdal. Abdal is said to be a successor, five generations in the line to Qais who is stated to have sprung from the Israili tribe. Qais embraced Islam during times of the Prophet and was named Abdur Radhid in accordance with Islamic religious customs.” [Ahmad Shah Durani by Dr Ganda Singh, 1959, p12).


By LS.THIND on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 10:06 am:

GENESIS OF THE TERM AFGHAN:
PART I-B.

OTHER OPINIONS ABOUT THE ORIGIN OF NAME AFGHAN

Afghans are mentioned as ‘Avagana’ as well as’ Vokana’ by Vrahamihira in (6th c AD) in his Brihat-Samhita (16/38, 11, 61, Brahta-Samhita, Varahamihira).
Cf: “Afghans have also been described as ‘Vokanas’ by Vrahamihira in (6th c AD) in his Brihat-Samhita (16/38).” [Afghan Immigration in early middle ages—article contributed by K. L. Lal in the book “Studies in Asian History, p 20]
Cf: ‘ Pahlava-Sveta-Huna (white Huns)-Chola (i.e.northern) (cf Ency Brit (11th ed, XIII, 330)- Avagana (=Apagana=afghan)=Maru-China (XVI, 38 and XI, 61, Vrahamihira, Brahata-Samhita)’. [Hindu Polity, Part I II, p 129, Dr Jayswal]
“The name ‘Abagan’ was used for the Afghans by Iranians as is documented by the Sassanian Inscriptions of 3rd c AD”. [Afghan Immigration in early middle ages—article contributed by K. L. Lal in the book “Studies in Asian History, p 20).
Hiuen Tsang, the famous Chinese traveler of 7th c A.D. uses ‘A-po-kien’ for a people living between the Khyber pass and Gazni. Obviously, this Apokien of Hiuen Tsang stands for the term Afghan. [op cit, p 20]
Cf: “ On his return journey from India, the Chinese pilgrim Hsüan-Tsang travelled from Varnu (possibly modern Wana) to Jaguda in Ghazni, crossing the land of A-p'o-k'ien, . [ Hui-li 1959, p. 188.] a word derived from Avakan or Avagan, meaning Afghans”.
In Islamic sources, the first reliable mention of the Afghans is found in the Hudud al-alam, which says of a settlement on the borders of India and the Ghazni district that ‘there are Afghans there too'. Mention is also made of a local ruler some of whose wives were ‘Afghan women’.[Hudud al’Alam 1930 p. 16-A]
The use of ‘Ogan’ for Afghan has been reported by Sir Robert Scot in his well known book “The Kafirs of Hindukush, 1895,)
The term ‘Awagan’ for Afghan is also is in use in Afghanistan till date [p 14, Afganistan, its People, its Society, its Culture, 1962, by Donald N. Milber].
The name Afghan in Turkish which is called ‘Avagan’.
In the official records of Persian king Shapur III, 309-379 AD we find the term ‘Apkan’ (=AFGHAN) referring to Afghan People. Professor Sprengler and Sir Olaf Caroe believe that this Apkan evolved into modern word of "Afghan".
In his Shahnama, Firdousi mentions the term Avagan, referring to a General in Faridoon's army.
SEE YET FURTHER ON THE GENESIS OF TERM AFGHAN :
“The genesis of the word Afghan, as far as I know, is Persian. It is a derivation from the word 'Bagan', which means God. The corruption of this word can be found in the Hindi/Sanskrit language, which is Bhagwan for God” .

”The word Afghan is derived from the word ‘Abagan’ (i.e. without God), which the Persian coined for the Pakhtuns to describe them as non-believers. The antonym of Bagan (=believer in God) is Abagan (=non-believer) just as the antonym of political is apolitical in the English language”.

”The Persian bias for the Pakhtuns is a historical fact just like the bias of the Indians or British is in describing the Pakhtuns as savages and un-civilized”.

”Some authorities describe the genesis of the word Afghan to be a derivative of the Persian word ‘Fughan’, which means noisy lamentation. Since the Persians saw Afghans as noisy and un-civilized, they argue, therefore, they were named as Afghans”. (Above views are from L Mar)
http://www.afghanan.net/cgi-bin/ib/cgi-bin/printpage.cgi?forum=1topic=10
One thing becomes very clear from some of the documentation given above. We can at least see from the divergent views above that the name AFGHAN or any of its afore said earlier ‘supposed’ VERSIONS/DERIVATIONS existed from a time much earlier than Prophet Mohammed. Hence the traditional or a puranic account which some Moslem Afghan clans give about the origin of name ‘Afghan’ from the personal name of Afghana, the son of Qias is obviously a fallacy and hence misleading.
COMPARE: Although the origins of the Afghans probably lie in very ancient times, [ Morgenstierne, 1940; Grantovskiy, 1963] the first mentions of the Afghan people appear only in the sixth and seventh centuries.

ON TERM AFGHAN, SEE ALSO THE FOLLOWING:
EXTRACTS FROM AFGHANISTAN, ITS PEOPLE, ITS CULTURE, ITS SOCIETY:BY DONALD. N. WILBER:
“Historically, the Afghans are first mentioned by name (Avagana) by early sith century Indian astronmer Varaha Migira in his Brahat Samhiti. A little later, the Chinese traveler Hiuen Tsang mentions a tribe of A-po’kien, located in the Sulayman mountains. The earliest Moslem works mentioning them are the Hudud al’Alam (982 A.D.), the Tarikh-I-Yamini and those of Biruni. The Indian appellation Pathan does not occur till 16th c, but the change into Pathan (from plural of Pushtun; Pushtana) indicates that it must have been used at a much earlier date. Biruni places the Afghans in western frontier mountains of India. No Afghan settlement west of Ghazni is mentioned by early authors. The origin and early history of westernmost Pushtun tribe, the Abdalis remains obsecure” [op cit, p 40]
“In warfare at the end of twelfth century between the Moslems and Hindus, Afghans are represented as fighting on both sides, which suggests that although legend places their conversion in the early Islamic period, they had not yet all been converted to Islam. Repeatedly, they are referred to as a rebellious and turbulent people. Timur considered them brigands and is reported to have ravaged their strongholds ain the Sulayman mountains. Their reputation as a fierce race of mountain robbers and occasionally, soldiers of fortune turned to fame with rise to power in India of the Afghans adventurer, Daulat Khan Ludi of Ludi clan of Ghilzai”………. [ibid, pp 40-41]

AND FURTHER ALSO SEE THE FOLLOWING
AFGHAN AFGHANISTAN: An Etymological Overview.
By: Farid Maiwandi:

“The earliest record of the word "Afghan" was found in a tablet at Naqsh-i-Rostam in Shiraz. Written during the reign of the Sassanid King, Shapur I who ruled between 260-273 AD, the tablet refers to a certain military officer as Vindifer Abgan Rasmand. Translated in modern Persian it means Vindafer Salar-i Jangi-e Abgan. The word Abgan is an old Pahlavi (Parthian) word, which is believed to be the derivative form of an adjective describing robustness, resilience, or bravery.

The word seems to have found a wider usage by the time of Shahpur III, who ruled between 309-379 AD, and used the term Apkan in his official title. Professor Sprengler and Sir Olaf Caroe call this term equivalent to the modern word of "Afghan". In his Shahnama, Firdousi mentions the term Avagan, referring to a General in Faridoon's army.

We encounter the word "Afghan" next in the works of the famous Indian astronomer, Varha-Mihira. He died in 578 AD after he wrote his famous book of Bharata Smitha, where the word "Afghan" appears as Avagana in verses 11-61 and 16-31.

Heun Tsung provides the next recorded reference of "Afghan". He was a Chinese traveller who visited Afghanistan between 629-645 AD. In his Memories of the West, he refers to the territories between Banu and Ghazi as Op-o-Kin. Modern researchers, such as Cunnigham, strongly believe the word Op-o-kin* to be the same as the modern "Afghan".

*COMMENT: The term which appears in Chinese traveler Hiuen Tsong is Ap-o-kien and not Op-o-kin as Farid Majwandi asserts.

"AFGHAN" IN POST-ISLAMIC ERA:

It is in this period that the original word of Abgan, Apkan, Avagana, and others becomes Arabicized and transform to "Afghan". The first post-Islamic mention of the word is seen in Hudud-ul Aalam written by Jawzjani in 982 AD. On page 45, he writes about Sool: "which is located on top of a hill, where the ‘Afghans’ live."

In 1025 AD, Al-Atabi wrote his Tarikh-i-Yamini during the reign of Ghaznavids. It provides accounts of how "Afghans" were recruited into Sabuktagin's army. Another giant of the Ghaznavid era, Abu-Raihan Al-Biruni(d. 1048 AD), wrote about "Afghans" in his Kitab-al-Hind. Other mentions of the word "Afghan" or "Afghania" are in Al-Kamil of Ibn-i-Asir, Aadaab-al-Harb Wal-Shuja'a of Fakhr-i-Mudabir, Tabaqat-i-Nasiri of Minhaj Siraj Jawazjani, Tarikh-i-Guzeeda of Hamadulla Mastaufi, Makhzan-i-Afghani of Ferishta and many more.

"AFGHANISTAN":

Just like the name of nations, the names of geographical regions and states go through similar process of adaptability over times, until such time when the name finds national acceptability and becomes part of that country's daily life, history, and literature.

Contrary to popular belief, the word "Afghanistan" did not come to existence during the reign of Ahmad Shah Durrani who ruled only as recently as in the second half of the eighteenth century.

The oldest recorded mention of this word is found in Tarikh-i-Herat of Saifi Herawi, written around 1221 AD. He refers to the region between eastern Afghanistan and the Indus as "Afghanistan".

This clearly indicates that the word "Afghanistan" was in use even at the time when the area was being pillaged and plundered by Mongols and other invaders.

Maulana Kamaludin Samarqandi(b 1413 AD), a courtier of the Timurids of Herat, refers to the same lands that Saifi Herawi had mentioned as "Afghanistan" in his Rozat-ul Janaat. Later we see the word "Afghanistan" in reference to the areas inhabited by today's Afghans in Akbar Nama and similar works. Zahirudin Babur, who was forced to leave Ferghana and came to conquer our homeland in 1525 AD, reigned over territories that the Mughul historians repeatedly referred to as Afghanistan.

CLICK THE FOLLOWING WEBSITE FOR MORE RELEVANT INFOMATION:
http://www.afghanan.net/cgi-bin/ib/cgi-bin/topic.cgi?forum=8topic=8
COMPARE ALSO THE FOLLOWING:
“Although the origins of the Afghans lie in very ancient times,4 the first mentions of the Afghan people appear only in the sixth and seventh centuries. The Brhat-samhita (XVI, 38 and XI, 61) speaks of the pahlava (Pahlavis), the svetahuna (White Huns or Hephthalites), the avagana (Afghans) and other peoples. On his return journey from India, the Chinese pilgrim Hsüan-tsang travelled from Varnu (possibly modern Wana) to Jaguda in Ghazni, crossing the land of A-p'o-k'ien,5 a word derived from Avakan or Avagan, meaning Afghans. In Islamic sources, the first reliable mention of the Afghans is found in the Hudud al-calam, which says of a settlement on the borders of India and the Ghazni district that ‘there are Afghans there too'. Mention is also made of a local ruler some of whose wives were Afghan women.6 The Afghan language, or Pashto, is one of the East Iranian groups. Among its characteristics, it contains a stratum of Indian words and its phonetic system has been influenced by Indian phonetic systems, which is not the case of other Iranian languages. There are approximately 23 million Pashto-speakers in Afghanistan and Pakistan today.7 The mountains in the east of modern Afghanistan and the north of modern Pakistan were settled by Dards. They were known to the ancient Greek authors, who used several distorted names for them: Derbioi, Durbaioi, Daidala, Dadikai and Derdaios.8 In their descriptions of India, the Puranas speak of the Darada in the same breath as the inhabitants of Kashmir and Gandhara. They are repeatedly mentioned in the Ramayana and the Saddhar-masmrtyupasthana, together with the Odra (the Uddiyana). In Tibetan sources, the Darada are known as the Darta.9
There are two groups of languages that are now generally known as Dardic. The first are the languages of Nuristan (a region of Afghanistan): they form an 'individual branch of the Indo-Iranian family belonging neither to the Indo-Aryan, nor to the Iranian group'. The second group of languages (particularly the Dardic) are 'part of the Indo-Aryan [group], though far departed in their development from the latter'. The two groups, however, have much in common in their 'structural and material features [phonetical, grammatical and lexical]'.10 The Nuristani languages include Kati, Waigali, Ashkun and Prasun (or Paruni) and are chiefly spoken in Nuristan. The Dardic languages proper include Dameli, which is the link between the Nuristani languages and the Central Dardic. According to one classification, the Central Dardic languages comprise Pashai, Shumashti, Glangali, Kalarkalai, Gawar, Tirahi, Kalasha and Khowar. The Eastern Dardic group is divided into three sub-groups containing the Bashkarik, Torwali, Maiyan, Shina, Phalura and Kashmiri languages. In the early 1980s Dardic languages were spoken by 3.5 million people in Pakistan, India and Afghanistan, of whom 2.8 million spoke Kashmiri, some 165,000 spoke Khowar and some 120,000 spoke Pashai. The Nuristani languages were spoken by around 120,000 people.11
Burushaski is a completely distinct language: it stands at the confluence of three great families – the Indo-European, the Sino-Tibetan and the Altaic – but belongs to none of them. Its speakers live in northern Pakistan, in the region of the Hunza and Vershikum rivers, and number around 40,000. The language's morphological structure is very rich and the verb has a particularly extensive system of accidence. Burushaski is one of the oldest tongues, but its place in the system of ancient and modern languages remains obscure. Although a literary tradition may well have existed in the early Middle Ages, when Buddhism was widespread, no literary records have been found, which hampers attempts to reconstruct the language's past. There have been repeated attempts to trace its affiliations, and links with the Caucasian, Dravidian, Munda, Basque and other languages have been suggested, but from the standpoint of contemporary linguistics the case is not conclusive. Burushaski was unquestionably more current in ancient times and occupied a number of regions where Dardic languages are now spoken and where Burushaski acted as a substratal or adstratal foundation. Grierson has even postulated that speakers of Burushaski or related languages once inhabited all or almost all the lands now held by Dardic-speaking
http://www.unesco.org/culture/asia/html_eng/chapitre316/chapitre1.htm
1. Lazard, 1971; 1975, pp. 595–7.
2. Fuchs, 1938, p. 452.
3. Oransky, 1988, p. 298.
4. Morgenstierne, 1940; Grantovskiy, 1963.
5. Hui-li, 1959, p. 188.
6. Hudud al-calam, 1930, p. 16-A.
7. Morgenstierne, 1942; Gryunberg, 1987.
8. Francfort, 1985, Vol. 1, pp. 397–8.
9. Tucci, 1977, pp. 11–12.
10. Edelman, 1983, pp. 14–15, 35–6.
11. Morgenstierne, 1944; 1967; 1973; Fussman, 1972; Gryunberg, 1980; Edelman, 1983.
12. Grierson, 1919; Zarubin, 1927; Lorimer, 1935, Vol. 1; 1938 , Vol. 2; Klimov and Edelman, 1970.


By LS.THIND on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 10:00 am:

GENESIS OF TERM AFGHAN

PART II

AFGHAN AND AVUKANA PARALLELISM? OPINION OF SOME SCHOLARS
An article written by DENIS N. FERNANDO which he claims he subscribed to the Mahaweli magazine several decades back has received wide publicity in the English media newspapers recently. It not only claims that the Avukana statue is modeled after the recently destroyed Bamiyan Buddha statue in Afghanistan but that it was a replica of the latter. When used in reference to iconography a replica has to be an exact copy of the original in all respects. The writer does not furnish any evidence to support that it is so. He expects the reader to believe [what he thinks was the sculptor’s view, namely] that ‘’the aesthetic beauty [of the work at Avukuna] was so graceful and pleasing that he gave it the name of the country of origin", which is ‘Afghanistan’ or its variation ‘Avagan’ in Turkish. …The other argument used is the seeming parallel in the names ‘Avukana’ and ‘Afghanistan’ or rather its variation in Turkish which the writer calls ‘Avagan’. [D. G. B. de Silva]

http://www.island.lk/2001/05/12/satmag01.html


BELOW WE DISCUSS THE MORE SCENTIFIC ETYMOLOGY OF THE NAME AFGHAN:

ACCEPTABLE MODERN VIEW:

The above views by writers do confirm that the name Afghan or its equivalent form was indeed in existence much before Prophet Mohammad. But what was the true etymology and the acceptable logical and scientific explanation to the origin of the term AFGHAN has not been satisfactorily explained. It is fashion with numerous modern Moslem clans these days to link themselves/or trace their origin to Arab and claim that name Afghan has Arabic origin. But fashion or fad does not constitute genuine history.
The true origin of name Afghan….the more logical, scientific and reliable view comes from famous scholar of the classics, J. W. Mcgrindle, who states that:
“ The name Afghan however has evidently been derived from ASHVAKAN, the ASSAKENOIS of historian Arrian” (ref: Mcgrindle in Megasthenes and Arrian., p 180).
Dr Nand Lal Dey further endorses the above views of J. W. Mcgrindle (Goeographical Dictionery of Ancient and Medieval India, by N. L. Dey,).
Front ranking Indian historians and scholar like Dr J. C. Vidyalankar, in his classical book, ‘Itihaas Parvesh (An Introduction to History, 1948) also accept that the name Afghan is apparently seem to be evolved from Aspas or/and Ashvaks of the Sanskrit texts (Ashakayan/ Ashvakan and Asvayan of Panini).
Phillip Smith states that: “Some modern scholars think that Afghan preserve the name of Assaceni (Curtius VIII, 10, 5.38), Assacani (Arrian Anab IV 25, V.20) “ .

Note here that Assaceni and Assacani of the Greeks are the same tribes as the Aspasios and Assakenois of the other Greek writers. [These Asscani/Assaceni and Assakenois/Aspasios are the same as Sanskrit Ashavak/Ashvakan/Ashvakayan, Asvayan etc mentined in Panini IV-1, 110, 99 Ashtadhyai]

Cf: “The tribes living in the hilly regions in the valleys of Kunar, Swat and Panjkora valleys have been called Aspasios and Assakenois (from Iranian Aspa=Sanskrit Ashva). Their Indian names may be taken to be Ashvayana and Ashvakayana, as mentioned by Panini (IV. 1,110,99). The coins known as vatasvaka are attributed to these people, who might be identified with Ashvaka (=Ashmaka mentioned by Panini (IV,1, 173)”. [Journal of Royal Asiatic Society, pp 98-100: History and Culture of Indian People, the Age of Imperial Unity, Vol II, p 45, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr R. C. Majumdar, Dr Munshi etc.; cf: Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, pp 177178, Dr J. L. Kamboj; cf: These Kamboj People, 1980, pp118, 119,192].

NOTE THE CLASSICAL TRIBES OF PAROPAMISADEAN REGION: Assaceni (Curtius, VIII, 16. 5.38), Assacani Arrian Anab. IV, 25,V.20) Arrian treats them as separate tribes. Strabo distinguishes his Astaceni from the subjects of Asscenus, Aspasii, Guraei, Masiani and Nysaei. Nysaei are described as non-Indian while all the rest are described as Indian tribes[Dictionery of Greek and Roman Geography, 1843/1966, Vol I, p 243]
The CHIEF CITIES are described as Massaga, Peucela, Aornos (Ora), Bazira, Arigaeum, Andaka, Orobatis, Embolima and Dyrita.

Besides the views of the scholars as referred to above, there are numerous more well known scholars and Indologists like Luis Bishop and others also accept that that the name ‘Afghan’ is apparently derived from Ashvak/Ashvakan/Ashvakayan/Asvayan of Panini/Sanskrit texts.

Further also refer to ‘Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography’: Vol I, 1843/1966, William Smith, DCL, LLD, p 243).

Dr J. L. Kamboj, a distinguished Sanskrit scholar and specialist on ancient Kambojas, also agrees with scholars like J. W. Mcgrindle, Dr J. C. Vidyalankar etc who state that name ‘Afghan’ evolved from Sanskrit ASHVAKAN, the ASSAKENOIS of historian Arrian. (Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 118: also cf: K. S. Dardi: These Kamboj People, 1980, p 192).

COMMENTS:
[The use of ‘Ogan’ for Afghan has been reported by Sir Rober Scot in his well known book “The Kafirs of Hindukush, 1895,]

[The term ‘Awagan’ for Afghan is also is in use in Afghanistan till date [p 14, Afganistan, its People, its Society, its Culture, 1962, by Donald N. Milber].

[The use of Avagan for Afghan is documented by Vrahamihira in his Brahata Samhiti, 16.38, as already stated above].

THE FOLLOWING SEEM TO BE THE TRANSFORMATIONS OF ANCIENT SANSKRIT ‘ASHVAKA/ASHVAKAN’ INTO MODERN AFGHAN DOWN THE ROAD, IN THE OPNIONS OF MODERN SCHOLARS: AND WE QUITE AGREE WITH THIS ANALYSIS:

Ashvaka (Sanskrit texts)== > Ashvakayan (Panini IV-1, 110, 99; Ashtadhyai] == > Ashvakan (J. W. Mcgrindlle) == > Awakan == >Avakan (=Avukan, Denis N. Fernando) ==> Avagan (Brahta-Samhita of Varaha Mihira, cf: also ‘Avagan’ in Turkish, cf: also ‘Avagan’ in Firdousi’s Shahnama) == Awagan (= Ogan, Robert Scot) ==Apkan (=Abgan) [official records of Persian king Shapur III, 309-379 AD we find the term Apkan which term also appears as ‘Abagan’ in Sassanian records; also cf: A-po-kien (=Apkan) of Chinese Hiuen Tsang] == > Apagan (Dr Jayswal) == > Afghan. (seems quite logical to us).

The modern descendents of the ancient Ashvakan/Ashvakayan Kamboja clans of Panini are the Aspins of the Chitral and Yashkuns or Mashkuns of the Gilgit. The Massaga city of the Greek historians has its modern name as Mashkayan. This is the same city as the Mashkavati of Panini. This city is about 24 miles from Bazaur. The Asvayan Kamboja clans of Panini (Aspasins/Aspasians, Aspas) find their modern descendents in Asp, Isap, Pachai and Yusufzais. (A Comprehensive Hist of India, Vol II, p 118, Dr N. K. Shastry; Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 278, Dr J. L. Kamboj, These Kamboj People, 1980, p 120, K. S. Dardi). Asvayans, the ancestors of these people lived between Indus and Kabol rivers at the times of Alexander invasion.

BUT THEN WHO WERE THESE ANCIENT ASHVAKAN, ASHVAKAYAN, ASVAYAN TRIBES?:

There is one school of eminent scholars/Indologists identifying or locating ancient Kamboja mentioned in the Buddhist Jatakas and Sanskrit texts in the Paropamisadean region [SE of Hindukush covering Kabol, Begram, Alishang, Kunar, Swat Panjkora regions of Afganistan and N.W.F.P of Pakistan] . There are numerous indisputable and irrefutable evidence which puts the ancient Kamboja in the above mentioned territories . This region was called Paropamisadean in Persian/Greek terminology. And it was the land of the Kambojas who stand prominently mentioned in Ashoka’s Inscriptions (Asoka’s Rock edicts V XIII). [PHAI, 1996, commentary , pp 601,604-613 etc, Dr Raychaushury, Dr Mukerjee]
[For more evidence and further details, refer to the website ‘Location/Identification of Ancient Kamboja Mahajanapada’……the views of seconds school about Kamboja location.].

http://indiaculture.net/talk/messages/128/9181.html?1005368678

The first scholar who identified the Asssakenois and Aspasios of the classical writers….(= variously called Ashvaka/Ashvakan/Ashvakayan/Asvayan/Aspasian/Aspasin tribes in Sanskrit texts) with the Kambojas of Ashoka’s R.E. V (Yona-Kamboj-Gandharanam) R.E. XIII (Yone-Kambojesu) as well as the Kambojas of other numerous Sanskrit and Pali texts was a well known French Indologist, E. Lamotte. (ref: Historie the Buddhism Indien, p 110).

Dr K. P. Jayswal has also established independently that the Assakenois, Aspaasios etc tribes of Greek writers and Ashvakas tribes of the Sanskrit were a clans of the Kambojas [which term was the general name for their vast tribe] mentioned in Ashoka’s R.E (V XIII) and numerous Sanskrit and Pali Texts.
Argues Dr Jayswal: “From Arrian, we get some light on the identification of Yona-Kamboja-Gandharas of the Ashoka. In the edicts these are grouped together, which means, they were all neighbors situated in that order. The enumeration is scientific, being in geographical sequence from west to east, which is confirmed by Arrian (I):--

“The region beyond the river Indus on west are inhabited, upto the river Kophen by two Indian tribes, the Astakenois and Assakenois…….The Nysois however are not Indian race, but descendents of those who came into India with Dyonisos…The district in which he planted this colony the named Nysaia (=the Naisaya Janapada of Patanjli)…and city itself Nysa. But the mountain close by the city and on the lower slopes of which is built, is designated Meros (Meru)…In the dominions of the Assakenois, there is a great city called Massaka (Massaga), the seat of of the soverign power which controls the whole realm. And there is is another city, Peukelaitis (Pusklavati=Peshawer) which is also of great size and is not far from Indus. These settlements lie on the otherside of river Indus, and extend in western direction as far as Kophen (Kabol).”
Says Dr K. P. Jayswal: Arrian, in the above passage, indicates that the Pusklavati was easternmost in this enumeration, and his Assakenois, or the Ashvakas, were on river Kabol and between the Nysa Yavanas and the Puskalavati. Puskalavati was in Gandhara. Ashoka’s Kambojas were between the Yavaans and the Gandhara. The Kambojas of Ashoka and of Sanskrit and Palli Texts thus occupy exactly the same position as Arrian’s Assakenois (Ashvakas). We thus get another name for the Kambojas i.e. Ashvakas. The Kambojas were famous for their horses and as CAVALARY-MEN (Ashva-Yuddha-Kushlah) [MBH Santi Parva , 105.5 (Kumbakonam, ed.); Ashvakas ,horsemen’ was the term popularly applied to them. [Hindu Polity, 1978, Part I II, pp 139-140, Dr K. P. Jayswal).
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COMMENTS:
The Kambojas had been known in history for their best specimen of horses. Not only were they breeder/raisers of best breed of horses, but also were they wonderful cavalary-men and have been designated as Ashva-yudh-kushlah in classical Sanskrit literature.

(1)The Kamboja Cavalry-men in Mahabharata war had played a most prominent role on behalf of Kaurvas.

(2)Kamboja Cavalry had also played a key role in the composite army of Chandergupta Maurya nasd won him the throne of Magadha. (Buddhist Play, Mudrarakshas II.2).

(3)Kamboja cavalary men had aided the Haiyava/Talzung Kashatryas and had usurped the throne of Aydhya from Aryan king Bahu. The Kamboja cavalry-men again fought the second battle of Aydhya against king Sagara.

(4)In Kalika/ Kali war between Vedic king Kalika (Pushpamitra) and the last king of Mauryan, the Buddhist Kamboja Cavalry again sided with the Mauryan king against Vedic king Shungvaamsa Pushpamitra. The Kamboja cavalry has been described as BHIM-VIKARAMA…[i.e. of terrific prowess] in the Kalika Purana (Shloka 20/40).

(5) Kambohojas highlander cavalary-men had also joined the forces of Persian kings and had fought against Greeks and other tribes of the west.
We can quote zillions of instances like the above which clearly proves that Kamboja cavalry was much sought-
after in the ancient times and had helped in raising and maintaining some of the famous empires in ancient world history.

Also Compare:
“Both the Puranas and the epics agree that the horses of the Sindhu and Kamboja regions were the finest breed and that the services of the Kambojas as cavalry troopers were requisitioned in ancient wars. In the Mahabharata war the Kambojans were enlisted”
source: War in Ancient India - By V. R. Ramachandra Dikshitar 1944. p. 103 -105)

http://atributetohinduism.com/War_in_Ancient_India.htm

Compare:
“They (Kamboja cavalry- soldiers) are said to have fought as far as Egypt and Greek while serving in the armies of Achaemenian kings of Ancient Persia. In this process many of these soldiers had settled in as far as Sudan/Africa” [Dr J. L. Kamboj, People and the Country, 1981).

Compare:
“Kamboja and Gandhara were the outermost regions and they had by the fifth century BC already developed significant relations with the Achaemenid Empire of Persia. Evidence exists of tributes being paid to Cyrus of Persia and armies recruited from the two regions battling against the Greeks………”.

http://www.foil.org/history/greekinv.html

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By LS.THIND on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 9:54 am:

GENESIS OF TERM AFGHAN

PART III

Let us resume the main topic:
“The Vata (=Varta)-Ashavkas were the Ashvakas who inhabited Eastern Afghanistan and who were included in the general term Kambojas. On their coins, there is a Kaboli in long robes doing obesiecance to Maurya symbol, Chandra on hill (J. R. A. S. 1936, 437). ………..The legend is in old Sanskrit script (brahmi)—Vatasvake. Here Vata is corruption of Varta which reminds us of varta-shasteropajivin description of theirs (Kambojas) in the Arathshastera…..” [Hindu Polity, Part I II, 1978, p 121, Dr jayswal]
Cf: Kambhoj-Surashtra-Kashatrya-shrenadyo-varta-shasteropajivin (A. S. XI.1.160, p 376) One of this group of republics seem to bear the name vata (=varta) ashvakas, the Ashvakas following varta (horse breeding/raising/trading). [see J.B.O.R.S. , XX, 289 on their coins]. (cf: op cit p 51, Dr Jayswal).

Pahlava-Sveta-Huna (white Huns)-chola (i.e.northern) (cf Ency Brit (11th ed, XIII, 330)- Avagana (=apagana=afghan)=Maru-China (XVI, 38, Vrahamihira, Brahata-Samhita).

Cf: “….But the Mecedonian conqueror made short shrift of the arrangement of Darius and over-running the Achaemenian empire, dashed into Afghanistan and encountered the stiff resistence from the Kambojas tribes called Aspasian and Assakenois, known in Indian texts as Ashvaya and Ashvakayana…..”…[source: Punjab Past and Present, pp 9-10, History of Poros, pp 12, 38, by Dr Buddha Parkash).

Dr L. M. Joshi and Dr Fauja Singh, the two well known scholars of Punjab have also identified the Aspasios and Assakenois of the Greek with the Kambojas of Indian Texts. [History of Punjab, Vol I, by Dr L. M. Joshi, Dr Fauja Singh).

Dr H. C. Raychaudhury and Dr B. N. Mukerjee, two very well known scholars of Bengal also identify the Assakenois/Aspasiois of the Greeks with the Ashvakas of Sanskrit texts and further with the Kambojas of ancient Sanskrit/Opalli Texts. (ref: Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 133, 216, Dr H. C. Raychaudhury, Dr B. N. Mukerjee). The reigning king of the Assakenois tribe at the time of Alexandra Assakenos. (P.H.A.C, 1996, p 217, Dr Raychaudhary, Dr B. N. Mukerjee). States Dr Raychaudhury: “With the expression Assanam-ayatanam, ‘land of horses’ used by Pali texts in reference to the Kambojas (Dictionery of ali Proper Names, I, 526; cf MBH., VI.90.3) may be compared to the names Aspasio ans Assakenois given by the classical writers to the sturdy tribes living in Alishang and Swat valleys in the days of Alexandra (Camb Hidt Ind. I, 352 n). [PHAI 1996, p 133 fn 5, cf: p 216 fn 3).

IMPORTANT COMMENT:
Afrikes or Erix was an offshoot of the Ashvaka/Ashvakan Kamboja subtribe, whose chieftain had also been called Aphrikes by Diodoros or Erix by Curtius, obviously after the name of the sub-tribe (Aphrikese/Erixes) he represented or headed, as is usual for the Greek writers. ( The Afrikes tribe also appears mentioned as Aprytae in other classical writings of the Greeks: Ref: Gates of India, 1910 by Colonel Sir Dr Thomas Holdich, K. C. M. G., K. C.I. E., C. B. D. Sc; for Aparita/Apritah=Afridi, cf Hindu Polity, Part I II, 1978, p 123, Dr Jayswal). This Afrikes, the king of Afrikese tribe, faced the onslaught of Alexandra after the defeat of other wing of his tribal branch called Aornos or Ora. The tribal name Afridi whose representaives are the modern Afridi Pashtuns, living mainly around the Khyber Pass these days is evidently derived from this above Aphrikes or Erix or Aprytae, according to the historians (Ref: Kamboja People and the Country 1979 by Dr. J. Lal Kamboj, These Kamboj people 1979 by K. S. Dard p 128, History of Panjaby Vol I II by Dr. Fauja Singh and Dr L. M. Joshi). This Aphrikes of Diodoros and Erix of Curtius has been described as the brother of the king or chief of Assakenois (=Ashvakan) Kamboja tribe. (ref: Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 217, Dr Raychaudhury, Dr B. N. Mukerjee)..Chief Aphrikes led the flying defenders of the famous fortress of Aornos (Ora) against the Greeks (Camb Hist Ind I 356). Aornos is identified by Sir Aurel Stein with the height of Una between Swat and the Indus (Alexandera’s Campaign on the Frontier, Benares Hindu University, Magazine, Jan, 1927). The southern side of the stronghold was washed by the Indus (Invasion of Alexandra, 271). The inhabitants thus seem to have migrated to Khyber Pass and Kamma valley. The geographical region of Afghanistan to the south-east of Kabol river, falling between Jalabad and the famous Khyber Pass of Sfedkoh mountain system is also still called the Kamm or Kamma valley (Ref: Struggle for Afghanistan 1991 page 158 by Nancy P Newell, Richards C. Newell) which further reminds us of the ancient Kamboja vestige left in this area, south-east of the Kabol river. [cf: ref: Military Text Books Series: “From Black Mountain to Wazirstan, by Col H. C. Wylly, C. B. 1912, p 237, 227 cf also: Kamma Daka, Kamma Shilman, Kamma Bela regions names]. These regions are the modern habitats of the Afridi tribe. Thus we learn that Afridis are also the descendents of ancient Ashvakan/Ashvakayan/Aspasin/Asvayan Kamboja tribes. [cf: History of Punjab, Vol I, by Dr Fauja Singh, Dr L. M. Joshi; also cf: These Kamboj People, 1980, p 128, K. S. Dardi; also cf: Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 287].

The Ancient Kamboja was a country famous for its finest breed of horses. Says Dr Michael Witzel: “….The best horses, according to Kautalya, are said to come from Kamboja (Kautlya Arathshaster 2.30.29) which is also well known from Mahabharata and Buddhist Jatakas (see Journal of Royal Asiatic Society 1912, p 253)”….The Buddhist Jataka Sumanglavilasini designates the Kamboja land as the land of horses [‘Kambojo- Assan-ayatanam’: Sumanglavilasini (P.T.S.), Vol I, p 124] …which expression means: Kamboja== > home of horses. {also compare: Brahamanda, II, 2.16.16. D.P.P.N., I, p 526; Visuddhimagga, (.P.T.S.) 332; Jataka no 504, according to Jain Uttaradhyanasutra, a trained Kamboja steed excels all other horses (S.B.E. XLV, p 47; MBH II., 49.20; 51.4; 90.3; VII, 23.7; 36.36;X.132; Vamsa Bhaskara Madhyapithika etc etc. For Association of Kambojas with Ashvas, see our earlier write-up on "Kambojas and Their World Class Horses").

The horse is called Ashava in Sanskrit and Assan in Pali. Thus the ‘Assan’ of the Sumandlavilasini and several other Buddhist Jatakas refer to Ashva /Ashvaka of Sanskrit texts. The Kambojas were also popularly known as Ashvaka or Ashvakan, Ashvakayan or Asvayan in Sanskrit literature (e.g. Panini IV.3.99). The name also appears as Assaka in Palli texts. Here Ashvaka/Ashvakan/Ashvakayan (nickname) etc refer to the people connected with the horses..they were so nicknamed because of their prominent profession for breeding/rasing and trading horses etc. == >Thus the Kambojas, by virtue of their profession connected with horses, were popularly called Ashvakas or Ashvakans etc (cf: Dr K. P. Jayswal, Hindu Polity, p 140).

Besides the several authorities quoted above, other scholars like Dr Romila Thapar, B. Mathew etc and several more also identify the Ashavakas/Aspasins (Greek Assakenois/Aspasios) as being the sub-tribes of the general major tribe known in Sanskrit/Palli texts as Kambojas.

ASPASIOI/ASPASIS (Asvayans, Aspasins, Aspasians): “Tribal people who were living in the valley of Kunar/Chitral rivers to north-west Indian Frontiers at the time of invasion of Alexandra, the great, had offered stiff resistance to Greek invader and Alexandra had to fight two battles with them before were finally reduced to submission” [extract taken from: Dictionary of Indian History, 1967 by S. N. Bhattacharya, George Braziller, N. Y.]

ASAKANOIS (Ashvak/Ashvakan/Ashvakayan/Askenians): Tribal people who occupied at the time of invasion of India by Alexandra; the great portion of their the Swat valley near Markand pass, had a large army and seat of their government was at the fortified place called Massaga. It was formidable fortress , protected by nature and human art. Assakenois offered very stout resistance on one occasion succeeded in wounding Alexandra with an arrow. But in the end, Alexandra triumphed, the fort of Massaga was captured and Assakenois were reduced to submission after severe slaughter.” [extract taken from: Dictionary of Indian History, 1967 by S. N. Bhattacharya, Goerge Brazillar, N. Y.]

The relics of these clans are still identifiable from the modern Kamboja clan names like Ashoke, Asoi/Soi, Asavan/Sawan etc. The other well known Kamboja clans living in Kunar/Swat Valley
During the times of Alexandra were Gureans (=Gore), Gandaris (=Gandhe/Gaindey/Gandher), Mallois (=Mallas), Sabagrae (=Sabras), Glauganicians/Gillausians (=Gillauvey) etc. The names within brackets are the modern Kamboja surnames of these ancient clans.

The area of Kunar/Swat and Panjkors etc was inhabited by these Kamboja tribes during Alexdra’s times. The descendents of the Gureans are modern Gore tribe whose branches can still be found around the confluence of Swat/Panjkora rivers as well as on both sides of Kabol river where it merges with Lundei river. Note also that Lunde/Lundei is also a clan of the modern Kambojas.

Thus we gather that the Ashvakas/Ashvakans/Ashvakayans/Asvayans people were the clans of Kambojas. The general name for the tribe to which these people belonged was Kamboja. But local name Ashvaka was applied to the inhabitants of Kunar/Swat and Panjkora valleys simply because of their chief profession i.e. because they were famous people as horse breeders/raisers/traders.[ Cf: “The Vata (=Varta)-Ashavkas were the Ashvakas who inhabited Eastern Afghanistan and who were included in the general term Kambojas” ref p 121 of Hindu Polity, Dr Jayswal]

The modern Kambojas have physiognomic features resembling most prominently with many clans of modern Afghans. According to researcher K. S. Dardi, “the Kambojas can be easily identified from other clans of Punjab on account of their unique physiognomic features. Ethnically, they are generally well built and tall people with brown eyes, sharp noses, reddish transparent body color, broad chests and long necks……. They resemble more with the Iranians and Afghans than any other tribes of north India” (op cit. K. S. Dardi, p 346/47, 192-193 etc).

Cf also: “Kambojas probably had both Iranian as well as Indian affinities”. (Vedic Index of Names and Subjects Vol-I, p 138, by Dr A. A. Mcdonnel, Dr. A. B. Keath)

A. H. Bingley, in his well known book [The Sikhs], endorses the opinions of another English investigator about the Kambojas. Writes A. H. Bingley: “…..One critique describes them ( Kambohs) as a tall, strong, skillful and stiff- necked race and therefore RESMBLING MORE WITH THE AFGHANS than ANY OF THE OTHER HINDU RACES living in the plains of Punjab among whom they (Kambohs) have now settled for several generations…….They are fit for military recruitment because they are generally a hardy and of powerful physique” . [The Sikhs, A. H. Bingley, 1970, p 57].

The above are the comments of one English investigator about the Kambojas of Punjab which A. H. Bingley has reproduced as above in reference to the Kambojas, in his well known book.

A PASSING COMMENT:
[On Kambojas’ excellent physical build, hardiness and enduring courage which have been appreciated as their great qualities for military recruitment, please also compare: “They (Kambohs) make excellent soldiers, being of a very fine physique and possessing great courage……….” [Source: The Sikhs and the Sikhs wars: Reginald Holder (From the Punjab past and present Vol IV, Part I, April 1970 Serial No 7, edited by Dr Ganda Singh).]

And we have already demonstrated above based on scientific etymology, the name AFGHAN is evidently derived from the name of Ashvakan/Ashvakayan/Asvayan Kamboja sub-tribes…And these sub- tribes were just a particular clans of a vast frontier tribe known by the general name “Kamboja” in Sanskrit/Pali literature .

After his detailed investigation of the Kambojas and the Avestan language, Dr Michael Witzel ( Harvard University, USA) has concluded that ‘Kamboja’ was a general name for a numerous Iranian speaking people (non-Indo-Aryans=Iranian Aryans) living on the border lands of India and Iran. “Most probably, the Kamboja was a blanket term covering all non-Indo-Aryans on the western border (cf: Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum, I, p 10, with ann; p. XXXVIII)” [Early Eastern Iran And the Atharaveda, Persica-9, 1980, p 115, fn 87], Dr Witzel.

THUS WE HAVE NO HESITATION IN STATING THAT IT WERE UNDOUBTEDLY THE WARLIKE “ASHVAKAN” KAMBOJAS OF THE ALISHANG/SWAT/KUNAR/PANJKORA VALLEYS WHO HAD GIVEN THE AFGHAN PEOPLE/ THEIR COUNTRY THEIR PRESENT NAME.

IMPORTANT NOTE:: Kophen, Kaoufu, Kophes, Kubha, Kabol, Kipin, Kapicene, Kapish, Kambysis etc are synonymous terms, according to numerous scholars who further link these terms with Sanskrit Kamboj, Kabuj etc [, J.W. Mcgrindle, Sir H. M. Elliot, R. K. Mukerjee, Dr D. C. Sircar, Dr J. L. Kamboj etc]
For Kabuj=Kamboj, also ref to Dasam Granth, M/S Bhai Chater Singh ji Co by Bhai Narain Singh Ji Giani, corrections by Dr Ajit singh Ji Aulakh Ph D
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By LS.THIND on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 9:51 am:

GENESIS OF NAME AFGHAN.

PART IV

WHO ARE PATHANS AND WHO ARE ARYANS:

The following text is by Ali Reza, an Iranian national, in response to Mr Najeeb’s comments about Pashtuns:

Najeeb had argued:

“Pathans believe that they are all descended from a common ancestor, Qais. He is said to have met the Prophet Muhammad. The prophet gave Qais the name "Pthun, and Qais was to take Islam back to his home. One of Qais's sons was name Afghana, who had four sons. Every Pathan traces its descent from one of these four sons”

BUT HISTORY SAYS THE FOLLOWING: [ACCORDING TO ALI REZA]

Variations on the word "Afghan" may go back as early as a 3rd-century-AD Sasanian (a Persian dynasty) reference to "Abgan." (and that was only for Pashtuns) The earliest Muslim reference to the Afghans probably dates to AD 982, but tribes related to the modern Afghans have lived in the region for many generations.

History also said the Pashtuns have been living in Afghanestan about 5000 years ago and at that time prophet Mohammad wasn't yet born!

So AFGHAN, as Najeeb said by himself means PASHTUN and all the people of Afghanistan.
Islamic armies defeated the Sasanians in AD 642 at Nahavand (near modern Hamadan, Iran) and moved on to the Afghan area, but they were unable to hold the territory; cities submitted, only to rise in revolt, and the hastily converted returned to their old beliefs once the armies had passed. The 9th and 10th centuries witnessed the rise of numerous local Islamic dynasties. One of the earliest was the "Tahirids" of "KHORASSAN" whose kingdom included Balkh and Herat. they established virtual independence from the 'Abbasid caliphate in AD 820. The Tahirids were succeeded in 867-869 by a native dynasty from Seistan, the Saffarids. Local princes in the north soon became feudatories of the powerful Samanids, who ruled from Bukhara. From 872 to 999 Bukhara, Samarkand, and Balkh enjoyed a golden age under Samanid rule. sp Pashtuns were not the first who became Moslem in Afghanestan [as they claim!!]

ABOUT THE FATHER OF PASHTUNS, AHMAD SHAH ABDALI:
Nader Qoli Beg took Herat in 1732 after a desperate siege. Impressed by their courage, Nader recruited many Heratis to serve in his army. He was elected shah of Persia, with the name Nader Shah, in 1736.
In 1738, after a year's siege, the city of Qandahar fell to Nader Shah's army of 80,000 men. Nader Shah seized Ghazna and Kabul and occupied the Mughal capital at Delhi in 1739. His booty included the Koh-i-noor diamond and the Peacock Throne.

THE DURRANI DYNASTY [FIRST PASHTUN DYNASTY]

The commander of the Nadir Shah's 4,000-man Afghan bodyguard was "Ahmad Khan Abdali" who returned to Qandahar where he was elected king (shah) by a tribal council. He adopted the title Durr-i Durran ("Pearl of Pearls"). Supported by most tribal leaders, Ahmad Shah Durrani extended Afghan control from Meshed to Kashmir and Delhi, from the Amu River to the Arabian Sea. The Durrani was the "second greatest Muslim empire" in the second half of the 18th century, surpassed in size only by the Ottoman.Ahmad Shah died in 1772. That means the first Pashtun Empire was working for an Aryan Empire then he became King!

ABOUT ARYANS.
”About 6,500 Years ago, successive waves of people were migrating into a land which is now called Iran and Khorassan which is now called Afghanestan and northern Iraq. They called themselves the black-headed (dark- haired) people. We know them as the Aryan/Sumerian, ancestors of Iranians and the land in which they settled as the land of Sumer (Iran Plateau).Aryans in prehistoric times settled in Central Asia, which later around 2nd millennium BC, as isolated groups of people had appeared in Iranian plateau. The word Aryan, for the first time was mentioned in AVESTA (book of Zoroastrians)as the "AERYAN VAEJAH" (Land of Nobles) as one of sixteen lands including, Khwarazmia, Soghdia, Margiana, Balkh, Hilmand and etc (dated around 18th century BC).”

As you can see there's no Kandahar in this list!
This means the pashtuns didn't exist at that time, 7000 years ago, the history of Pashtuns are about 4500 or 5000 years]

"Like it or not, Aryans of Afghanistan are Iranians, Iranian is the modern name for Aryans"
The Aryans/Sumerians established the first recognizable civilization with a workable system of government. Their other achievements include the invention of WHEELED VEHICLES and the use of written language. The ancient Iranians developed the scientific practice of agriculture; on the arts side, a distinctive style of architecture and a complex religion which is reflected in their literature.
The Aryans of ancient Land of Aryans were Mazdayasni Zarathushtris, ie. Worshippers of Ahura Mazda (the name of God in Avestan language i.e Allah in Arabic mean God) as revealed by the ancient prophet Zarathushtra (one of the 124000 prophets of God) thousands of years before Christ.(Isa)
The Arabic religion, Islam only began in Land of Aryans 1300 years ago.

The "Vendidad" is one of the ancient scriptures of the Zoroastrians, actually called the "Vi-daevo-dat" or the law to fight against evil. In the first "Fargad" or chapter, the Golden Age of the ancient Aryans is outlined with their greatest king, "Yima Kshaeta" who banished old age and death. Then, the ice age broke on the ancient home and the Aryans were forced to migrate southwards, to the southeast and the southwest.

The Aryans migrated from the ancient home to Iran and from there to India and Greece and Europe such as Germany, Italy, IRELAND (which also mean land of Aryans).

The ancient Iranian Aryans believed that the world as created by Ahura Mazda (God)was perfect, with no evil. The first man Gayo Maretan had no disease, no illness, no hunger and thirst. Only the good creation of God existed eg., the Dog, Cow and Bull, Horse,Birds etc. Then Ahriman the evil one attacked the world and caused evil to appear, disease and illness and old age, and the animals and the first man started to die. Night began to fall (before the sun was at the noon position - fixed, so there was no time). The evil brood of animals appeared eg. snakes, insects, and the cat breed. So evil in the ancient faith is an external introduction, which one day will be purged when the world will be bathed with the purification of fire - the latter also found in old German mythology. Paradise itself will be established on the earth, in the form of the Kingdom of Ahura Mazda. The English word "paradise" itself stems from the Avestan "PairiDaize", meaning the same. Also, the word "garden" probably stems from the Avestan "Garod-man" meaning the House of songs - the ancient name of heaven for the Aryans.

Today 60% of the people of the world are Aryans, in Europeans, Americans, Indians, Greece, Iranians (Includes Aryans from Afghanestan) and many more are all from Noble Race, Aryans, it's Aryans who brought civilisation to this world but it was religion which separate them, it was religion which make them kill eachother and hate eachother, the religion of Aryans, Zoroastrian, was the religion of brotherhood and love. it came to Zoroaster by Angel Gabriel and it was the first Religion of God in 7000 years ago. [Ali Reza]
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ONE IMPORTANT COMMENT:
PASHTO US AN EAST IRANIAN LANGUAGE:[EAST IRAN=AVESTAN SPEAKER’S REGION= PART OF ANCIENT KAMBOJA COUNTRY]
“…..The Afghan language, or Pashto, is one of the EAST IRANIAN groups of languages. Among its characteristics, it contains a stratum of Indian words (Sanskrit) and its phonetic system has been influenced by Indian phonetic systems, which is not the case of other Iranian languages……..”.


(Source: Volume III, The crossroads of civilizations: A.D. 250 to 750. Editor B.A. Litvinsky Co-editors Zhang Guang-da and R. Shabani Samghabadi; Tokharistan and Gandhara under Western Türk rule (650 - 750) Part One History of the regions (J. Harmatta) Part Two Languages, literature, coinage, architecture and art (B. A. Litvinsky)
http://www.unesco.org/culture/asia/html_eng/chapitre316/chapitre1.htm

According to scholars, (Michael Witzel, Dr J. C. Vidyalankar, Rodney Lingam etc) Avestan was the language of the east Iranians whom they call the Kambojas.

According to Dr Michael Witzel, Avestan in the earlier times was the language of the region where the Pashto is spoken today.

The modern Pashto language had also evolved from the Avestan language.

The Young Avestan was the language of the Iranian Kambojas i.e. the Kambojas living in East Iran…the land of the Avestan speakers. [cf: Michael Witzel: East Iran=Ancient Kamboja].

Concludes Dr Michael witzel: “In short, my Siddhaanta is that the Kambojas are an east Iranian people living in the Arachosia/Kandahar area and that they spoke a form of later Avestan, long before Pashto etc. took over in these areas…” [Dr. Michael Witzel, Harvard University]

According to Sir Grierson, a distinguished Indianist and linguistic expert, “Kambojas were a barbarous tribe of the north-west who either spoke Sanskrit with an infusion of Iranian words to which they gave Indian Inflexions or also spoke a language partly Indo-Aryan and partly Iranian” (J.R.A.S. 1911, pp 801-802: See also ancient evidence/documentation from Yasaka (Nirukuta II.2)

“………. and they (Kambojas) spoke a language which was either half Indian and half Iranian or any how had an infusion of Iranian words.” (The Greeks in Bacteria and India, 1966, Pp 170, 138 by W.W. Tarn).

“Yaska in the Nirukta, a text of about 500 B.C. explaining with illustrations certain selected Vedic words, tells us that the speech of the Kambojas differed in certain respects from the ordinary Indian speech, referring doubtless to the tribes living north-west of the Indus who bore that name.” [Ref: Extension of the Aryan Civilisation; later Samhitas, Brahmanas, p 104, ch V, p 104)

“Several European scholars have suggested that the Kamboja people were a MIXED TRIBE HAVING ETHNIC, LINGUISTIC AND POLITICAL AFFINITIES shared both with the IRANIANS AND INDIANS PEOPLE. (ref: Afghanistan, its people, its Society, its culture, by Dr Donald Wilber 1962, p 50; Afghanistan, Study of Political Developments in Central and Southern Asia, 1967, p 58, by Dr W. K. Fraser Tytler, Dr M. C. Gillet, cf: Dr Serge Thion etc etc).

“Kambojas probably had both Iranian and Indian affinities”. (Vedic Index of Names and Subjects Vol-I, p 138, by Dr A. A. Mcdonnel, Dr. A. B. Keath)

There are approximately 23 million Pashto-speakers in Afghanistan and Pakistan today[ . Morgenstierne, 1942; Gryunberg, 1987]

Saif Fazel

Library:

Saif Fazel

Author:

LS.THIND











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